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Activision Blizzard employees plan walkout amid sexual harassment lawsuit, report says

Activision Blizzard employees plan walkout amid sexual harassment lawsuit, report says

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Activision employees are reportedly planning to walk out tomorrow, July 28. 


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Activision Blizzard employees are reportedly threatening a walkout to protest the game maker’s response to a sexual harassment and discrimination lawsuit filed earlier this month. The planned action is part of an employee call for equality, new HR practices and a third-party audit of the company, which publishes the popular Call of Duty and World of Warcraft titles, says a Tuesday report by Bloomberg.

More than 2,000 past and present Activision Blizzard employees have signed a letter calling for “official statements that recognize the seriousness of these allegations and demonstrate compassion for victims of harassment and assault,” Bloomberg reported. The letter from employees, published by the news outlet, focuses on the workers’ distrust of the company’s leaders. It also expresses support for colleagues who say they’re victims of harassment and assault.

“We, the undersigned, agree that the statements from Activision Blizzard, Inc. and their legal counsel regarding the [California Department of Fair Employment and Housing] lawsuit, as well as the subsequent internal statement from Frances Townsend, are abhorrent and insulting to all that we believe our company should stand for,” the letter reads. Townsend, a high-ranking executive at the game maker and a former advisor to the US Department of Homeland Security, angered employees with an email that reportedly dismissed the state’s allegations.” To put it clearly and unequivocally, our values as employees are not accurately reflected in the words and actions of our leadership,” the letter continued.

Bloomberg reported that Activision Blizzard employees are planning a 10 a.m. PT walkout on Wednesday, July 28, outside the Blizzard campus in Irvine, California. 

On July 20, California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing accused Activision Blizzard of workplace discrimination and alleged that women aren’t compensated fairly and are subject to harassment. The agency called the company a “breeding ground for harassment and discrimination” in which women are subject to regular sexual advances by men, who largely go unpunished.

Activision Blizzard didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about the walkout. The company has previously blasted the state’s lawsuit, saying it includes “distorted, and in many cases false, descriptions.”

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