Outten & Golden LLP represents the California Civil Rights Department (CRD) against Activision Blizzard in a suit alleging unlawful discrimination, harassment and retaliation based on gender and sex, including sex-based pay discrimination under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and the California Equal Pay Act. Prior to filing the complaint, the CRD investigated Activision for three years and found that Activision systematically assigned women to lower roles, paid them less for substantially similar work, promoted them more slowly, and terminated them more quickly than their male counterparts. In addition, the CRD found that Activision fostered a workplace culture that sexualized women and condoned male misconduct by, for example, encouraging excessive alcohol consumption and ignoring repeated reports of sexual harassment like groping.
Outten & Golden is working with the CRD on extensive discovery issues in this state court action, as well as serving as counsel in parallel federal case regarding CRD’s intervention into the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) consent decree with Activision. The CRD seeks to intervene in the federal case to ensure that Activision’s aggrieved employees can seek all relief available under California law and to ensure that the CRD can fulfill its mandate of protecting all California employees subject to discrimination. In May 2023, U.S. District Judge Dale S. Fischer denied Activision’s motion for an order that the CRD can be forced to comply with the consent decree between the gaming company and the EEOC that the court approved last year.
Nature of Suit
Civil Rights: Jobs
Dale S. Fischer
September 27, 2021