FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 17, 2022 at 3pm ET
Press contact: [email protected]
This week, the Alphabet Workers Union-Communications Workers of America, which includes over 1,100 members across multiple Alphabet subsidiaries, sent a petition to multiple Alphabet executives calling on them to meet worker demands regarding reproductive justice in a post-Roe world.
The petition, which has over 650 signatures from Alphabet workers, was sent to Sundar Pichai and other top Alphabet executives on Monday.
It broadly makes three sets of demands: 1) that all abortion benefits promised by Alphabet to full-time employees (FTEs) be extended to the contracting workforce (TVCs), 2) that Alphabet stop funding politicians through NetPAC, given the role many of those receiving Alphabet donations played in supporting Supreme Court justices who overturned Roe, and 3) protecting Google users seeking abortions, by ensuring law enforcement cannot access abortion information and preventing misleading ads that direct users to anti-abortion “pregnancy crisis centers” when searching for abortions.
The following executives were sent the petition on Monday:
None have yet responded to the petition’s demands.
Following the Supreme Court’s overture of Roe v. Wade, Google quickly publicized new benefits for full-time employees, including relocation support for employees seeking to move to states with protected abortion access and health care coverage for any out-of-state abortion procedures. But these benefits were only promised to full-time employees directly hired by Google, discounting over half of Alphabet’s workforce who misclassified as temporary, vendor and contract workers. TVCs already receive lower pay than FTEs, have fewer benefits, and are more likely to live in states with restricted abortion access. They are particularly vulnerable to the Supreme Court’s decision and would benefit the most from Google’s expanded benefits on abortion access.
The petition calls on Alphabet to extend its reproductive and gender-affirming healthcare standard in the company’s US Wages and Benefits Standards to all workers.
“Google has the money and resources to ensure all their employees, contracted or not, have access to abortion,” said Alejandra Beatty, the Southwest Chapter Coordinator of AWU-CWA and a technical program manager at Verily, an Alphabet company. “They emailed us right after the ruling to affirm their support for their full-time employees getting abortions, but did not address how contracted workers, who tend to have more marginalized identities, would be supported in trying to exercise their right to choose. Google can and should do better.”
Another demand is for Alphabet to protect our government from corporate influence. The petition calls for Alphabet to stop lobbying politicians and any political organizations through NetPAC or any other means, as many of these politicians were responsible for appointing the Supreme Court justices who overturned Roe v. Wade.
“Google says they support abortive access for all people but that means very little when they are bankrolling politicians who continue to infringe on human rights issues not only concerning abortion, but voting access and gun control as well,” said Emrys Adair, a retail associate. “If Google is truly dedicated to supporting abortion access, they will put their money where their mouth is and withdrawal their funds from those who seek to make anti-abortion legislation.”
The last demand in the petition calls for Google to protect users and customers from having their data used against them and addressing the misleading information as it pertains to abortion services and other reproductive healthcare services on all Alphabet platforms and product. Google must ensure that users searching for abortion access are protected from having this access given to law enforcement, and are able to to access clinics with real abortion providers—not the “pregnancy crisis centers” that have run misleading ads on Google targeting those seeking abortions.
“Recently I read about Facebook handing over information that was used to arrest a user seeking abortion access and it became clear that tech companies are not going far enough to protect workers and users in a post-Roe America,” said Bambi Okugawa, a data center technician at Google. “If tech companies, be it Facebook, Google, or Bing, truly want to be an ally to those looking to get an abortion, they need to refuse to share users information regarding abortion searches and do their due diligence to make sure false information that could make users unsafe isn’t circulating the site.”
AWU-CWA is dedicated to continuing to fight for abortion rights to make sure workers and users alike are protected. History has proven that abortions will happen whether they are legal or not, so workers are organizing to make sure everyone has the tools necessary to access abortions as safely as possible, and we urge Alphabet to do the same.