St. Lucy's Priory High School

Google battles the Department of Labor

At 3.5 billion searches a day, Google has developed into the world’s most relied on resource for information in today’s society. Unfortunately, the tech powerhouse has fallen into yet another company scandal.

On Jan. 4, The Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against Google for refusing to disclose company contact information.

Since Google provides cloud services to the military and other various federal services, it is required that the company give the government full access to employee records.

This procedure is done in order to ensure that there is no discrimination in the interview process and hiring. Any form of discrimination based upon gender, religion, race or sexual orientation is thoroughly investigated by the Department of Labor.

This dilemma is not rare or uncommon. Many companies big or small are sued each year for not providing enough data. Palantir, a small underground data software startup founded by Nathan Gettings, Peter Thiel, Alex Karp, Joe Lonsdale and Stephen Cohen, was sued last September for allegedly discriminating against Asian-American job applicants.

Google is the most recent case on record to receive scrutiny from regulators for not exposing enough statistics and information.

Google has repeatedly refused to disclose employee names, salary history, contact information, and job history.

Thomas M. Dowd, Acting Director for the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, addressed the issue stating, “Despite many opportunities to produce this information voluntarily, Google has refused to do so. We filed this lawsuit so we can obtain the information we need to complete our evaluation.”

According to Google, the corporation has provided a substantial amount of information; allegedly reporting “hundreds of thousands of records.”

However, Google has refused to report some of the requested data, claiming that the employees privacy is at risk. Google has gone as far as criticizing the Department of Labor, alleging that the requests were “overbroad in scope.”

The board of directors of Google collectively feel strongly that it is the company’s responsibility to safeguard employees private contact information. Google defended this belief reporting that the requests by the Department of Labor included thousands of employees’ private contact information, which Google claims to “safeguard rigorously.”

Despite tensions being high, Google is handling the lawsuit well and is willing to work with the Department of Labor to find a compromise.

Google stated, “We hope to continue working with OFCCP to resolve this matter.”

–Caitlyn Moore