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Engineer fired for ‘sexist’ memo sues Google

An engineer fired from Google after circulating a memo criticising gender equality campaigns at the company is now suing his former employer.

James Damore and others have filed a class action law suit against Google alleging that they were discriminated against as white males.

Mr Damore had argued that "distribution of preferences and abilities of men and women differ in part due to biological causes and that these differences may explain why we don't see equal representation of women in tech and leadership" before being sacked by Google.

The suit is being handled by the Dhillon Law Group, which said it was representing people who were discriminated against due to their "perceived conservative political views", as well as being male and Caucasian.

Filed in a court in Santa Clara, California, the suit says its claimants were "ostracised, belittled, and punished for their heterodox political views, and for the added sin of their birth circumstances of being Caucasians and/or males".

It alleged that Google uses illegal hiring quotas to achieve a particular percentage of women and minority ethnic employees.

"Google's management goes to extreme – and illegal – lengths to encourage hiring managers to take protected categories such as race and/or gender into consideration as determinative hiring factors, to the detriment of Caucasian and male employees," the writ states.

Mr Damore was fired last August after circulating a 3,000-word memo arguing that the reason women were not in more leadership roles was because of their biological differences with men.

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Google's chief executive Sundar Pichai explained that "portions of the memo violate our code of conduct and cross the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace".

"To suggest that a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK," he added.

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