Yesterday reports came out that the California Agency suing Activision Blizzard alleged that the gaming giant shredded documents pertinent to the investigation, claiming that the company was interfereing with its investigation. Activision Blizzard has responded to the allegations, stating that the claims are "not true" and outlines what the company has done since to steer in the right direction.
The original lawsuit filing by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing was amended, expanding its claims to include temporary and contract workers. Also added to the lawsuit were claims that Activision Blizzard has shredded documents pertinent to the investigatoin by the DFEH, with the agency claiming the company was interfering with agency's ability to investigate.
Acitivision Blizzard last night responded to the claims, calling them outright "not true." In a statement made to Engadget, the gaming publisher pushed back against the allegations, as well as detailed steps its taken to change its workplace culture since the lawsuit allegations first were made public.
"With regards to claims that we have destroyed information by shredding documents, those claims are not true. We took appropriate steps to preserve information relevant to the DFEH investigation," the statement reads.
The statement by Activision Blizzard also lists what the company states it has done "implementing reforms" to ensure its workplace is "welcoming and safe for every employee." These include some of the high profile departures we've seen, such as former Blizzard president J. Allen Brack leaving the company, as well as Diablo 4's director Luis Barriga, World of Warcraft designer Jonathan LeCraft as well as Overwtach hero namesake Jesse McCree.
The company also states it has revamped its hiring practices, given greater transparency on pay equity, and more in the statement. The company closes its statement saying they are "committed to setting an expample that others can follow" as it pertains to creating the safe, inclusive environment for its employees. The statement is listed in full below.
"Throughout our engagement with the DFEH, we have complied with every proper request in support of its review even as we had been implementing reforms to ensure our workplaces are welcoming and safe for every employee. Those changes continue today, and include:
· Several high-level personnel changes;
· Revamped hiring and recruiting practices requiring diverse interview panels;
· Greater transparency on pay equity;
· Expanded and improved training and investigative capabilities for human resource and compliance staff;
· Created investigation teams outside of business units to support greater independence;
· Restructured divisions to support greater accountability;
· Enhanced review processes to include evaluation of managers by employees;
· Clear boundaries on workplace behavior with a zero-tolerance approach to harassment and other actions that diminish or marginalize.
With regards to claims that we have destroyed information by shredding documents, those claims are not true. We took appropriate steps to preserve information relevant to the DFEH investigation.
We strive to be a company that recognizes and celebrates the diverse talents and perspectives that lead to the creation of great, globally appealing entertainment. We have provided the DFEH with clear evidence that we do not have gender pay or promotion disparities. Our senior leadership is increasingly diverse, with a growing number of women in key leadership roles across the company.
We share DFEH’s goal of a safe, inclusive workplace that rewards employees equitably and are committed to setting an example that others can follow."