In a lawsuit, Arne Wilberg, a former recruiter at YouTube (and white male), stated that the parent company, Google, had established quotas for hiring underrepresented minorities to push the hiring of the underrepresented minorities, according to The Wall Street Journal. He says they were told to favor applicants from underrepresented groups within the company.
California labor law prohibits employers from making job decisions based on characteristics like race or gender. In one hiring round, the team was allegedly instructed to cancel all software engineering interviews with non-diverse applicants below a certain experience level, and to "purge entirely any applications by non-diverse employees from the hiring pipeline".
Wilberg claims that his performance reviews began to suffer as he refused to follow YouTube's diversity hiring agenda. Wilberg says he complained about the practices and was ultimately fired in November.
Arne Wilberg worked at Google for almost a decade. The company is now facing a Federal complaint filed by the National Labor Relations Board in April for interfering with employees' legal right to discuss "workplace diversity and social justice initiatives.' The complaint alleges that Senior Vice President Urs Holzle and numerous managers in his organization actively stoked up witch hunts in 2015 and 2016 meant to muzzle low-level employees who raised concerns about the company's practices".
In 2017 69 percent of Google's employees were men and the percentage of Google's workforce that is white of Asian has been 91 percent since 2014.
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Google, the first major Silicon Valley tech firm to publicly disclose its diversity statistics, said in a statement it would fight the lawsuit vigorously. "We have a clear policy to hire candidates based on their merit, not their identity", a spokesman said.
Wilberg alleges that several employees complained to Google about the company's hiring policies, but were either ignored, transferred, or demoted.
Wilberg is not the only white male tech employee who has publicly bashed Google's penchant to diversify. Google denies that its salaries are discriminatory.
In his suit, Wilberg says when he started to resist such hiring efforts, his previously high performance marks started to slip, per Ars Technica; he was sacked in November.