Activision Blizzard CEO says it’s cooperating with investigations, despite claims to the contrary | VGC
Bobby Kotick reiterates that the company is committed to being "one of the best, most inclusive places to work"
In a new press release that also states how the company has “an extraordinary track record of delivering superior shareholder returns for over 30 years”, Kotick claims that harassment and discrimination is not welcome.
“We are deeply committed to making Activision Blizzard one of the best, most inclusive places to work anywhere,” Kotick says. “There is absolutely no place anywhere in our Company for discrimination, harassment, or unequal treatment of any kind.
“While we continue to work in good faith with regulators to address and resolve past workplace issues, we also continue to move ahead with our own initiatives to ensure that we are the very best place to work. We remain committed to addressing all workplace issues in a forthright and prompt manner.”
The statement also claims: “The Company continues to productively engage with regulators, including the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), and the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) with the goal of improving its workplace policies and procedures and ensuring compliance.”
Kotick’s statement appears to be at odds with the DFEH’s ongoing harassment and discrimination lawsuit, which was updated last month to add allegations that the company had shredded documents relating to the case and was now interfering with the department’s mandate to investigate the accusations.
The updated complaint also accused Activision Blizzard of taking “adverse actions aimed at curtailing employee rights in this government enforcement action”.
It claimed that Activision Blizzard now requires its employees to agree to a waiver of rights, which includes the following conditions:
- Employees are requires to “release (i.e. give up) all known and unknown claims that I presently have against the Company… (including [sexual harassment and other claims]”
- Employees have to agree to non-disclosure terms that say they have never and will never disclose the terms or existence of any settlement payments
- Employees have to agree to non-disparagement terms that they can’t publicly criticise Activision Blizzard or any of its “policies, practices [or] standards of business conduct”
- Employees have to notify Activision Blizzard before they talk to the DFEH or another government agency, and have to “permit the Company to take all steps it deems to be appropriate to prevent or limit the required disclosure”
- Employees have to jointly request, along with Activision Blizzard, that some disclosures should be filed ‘under seal’ (not on the public record) in legal proceedings