Google Terminates 28 Employees Over In-Office Protest

Google has terminated the employment of 28 staff members following their participation in a protest against the company’s $1.2 billion contract with Israel. The protest, which took place in Google’s New York and Sunnyvale, California offices, was aimed at the company’s agreement to provide cloud computing services to the Israeli military and government. The demonstration was organized by the group No Tech For Apartheid.

The protesters, who held signs with messages such as “No more genocide for profit” and “Googlers against genocide,” were demonstrating within the offices of Google and Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian. Nine of the protesters were arrested during the demonstration.

In a statement released on Wednesday, Google confirmed the termination of the 28 employees involved in the protest. The company cited unacceptable and disruptive behavior that made coworkers feel threatened as the reason for the terminations. The statement also revealed that the employees had been placed under investigation and their access to company systems had been revoked.

Google’s statement further warned that similar actions would be met with the same consequences, emphasizing that such behavior would not be tolerated in the workplace. The company stressed its commitment to enforcing its longstanding policies against disruptive behavior, including termination if necessary.

In response, No Tech For Apartheid labeled the terminations as “retaliatory” and “illegal.” The group argued that Google employees have the right to peacefully protest about their working conditions.

While it is true that employees have the right to protest, employers also have the right to terminate employees who disrupt the workplace with political demonstrations. This is a lesson that the 28 terminated Google employees have now learned firsthand.