Google employees call for it to be kicked out of San Francisco Pride

Google employees call for it to be kicked out of San Francisco Pride
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Scores of Google employees have sent an open letter to the organizers of San Francisco's annual Pride parade urging them to kick the company out as a sponsor and parade participant.

In a letter posted to Medium on Wednesday, the employees wrote of a work atmosphere where concerns from LGBTQ employees are regularly brushed aside.

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"We have spent countless hours advocating for our company to improve policies and practices regarding the treatment of LGBTQ+ persons, the depiction of LGBTQ+ persons, and harassment and hate speech directed at LGBTQ+ persons, on YouTube and other Google products," the letter read.

"Whenever we press for change, we are told only that the company will 'take a hard look at these policies,' " the letter continued, adding: "But we are never given a commitment to improve, and when we ask when these improvements will be made, we are always told to be patient."

The letter asks organizers to drop Google as an official sponsor of the parade and prevent it from contributing a branded float.

"For a large company, perhaps waiting is prudent, but for those whose very right to exist is threatened, we say there is no time to waste, and we have waited too long, already. We are no longer content to wait," the authors wrote.

The employees' request comes after an internal dispute over Google's treatment of LGBTQ employees and content creators spilled out into the public view on Monday, when The Verge reported that several Google employees planned to protest the company's policies during Pride.

“Employees are free to make whatever statement they want personally, apart from our corporate sponsored float/contingent,” Google officials told those employees, according to The Verge. “But they are not permitted to leverage our platform to express a message contradictory to the one Google is expressing.”

The company and its subsidiary YouTube recently earned the ire of many LGBTQ critics after it announced a statement explaining that the company would not ban Steven Crowder, a right-wing commentator, for his homophobic attacks against Vox journalist Carlos Maza.