Pinterest agrees to settle gender discrimination lawsuit

Pinterest gender discrimination lawsuit

Pinterest has settled its gender discrimination lawsuit. Former Chief Operating Officer Francoise Brougher sued the social network in August, alleging retaliation and wrongful termination. Pinterest agreed to pay $22.5 million to settle the gender discrimination lawsuit.

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Pinterest Reaches Agreement In Gender Discrimination Lawsuit

In her case, Brougher alleged that Pinterest had a culture of secrecy among its top male executives. She said due to that culture, she was left out of a lot of meetings and major decision-making. Brougher wrote a blog post accusing the company of maintaining a hostile work environment for women. She alleged that “female executives, even at the highest levels, are marginalized, excluded and silenced.”

To settle the gender discrimination lawsuit, Pinterest agreed to pay Brougher and her lawyers $20 million and commit $2.5 million to helping women and underrepresented communities in the tech industry to advance.

In a statement issued jointly with Brougher, Pinterest said it “recognizes the importance of fostering a workplace environment that is diverse, equitable and inclusive and will continue its actions to improve its culture.” The company didn’t admit to any liability in the settlement.

Other Cases Of Discrimination

According to Fox Business, Brougher’s lawsuit isn’t the only case of discrimination raised at Pinterest. In June, former employees Aerica Shimizu Banks and Ifeoma Ozoma, who are black, accused the company of paying them less than their fellow male employees and of retaliating against them for speaking out about it.

Their allegations triggered much support from other staff members, who posted messages in Slack channels backing up the allegations. Their fellow employees also called for Pinterest to make improvements and asked supporters to use the hashtag #changeatpinterest and sign a petition that called for the company to stop discriminating and retaliating against its employees.

Not long after that incident, Pinterest said it had hired a law firm to independently review its workplace culture. Then in August, the company selected Tyi McCray to be its global head of inclusion and diversity. McCray reports to co-founder and CEO Ben Silbermann.

Pinterest also added two black women to its board of directors, bringing on Andrea Wishom and former Walt Disney executive Salaam Coleman. Pinterest stock has skyrocketed this year despite the gender discrimination lawsuit and other claims. The shares were roughly flat after the settlement was announced.

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