A new lawsuit has been filed against Activision Blizzard by a current employee who claims to have faced discrimination and experienced sexual harassment at the company.
The employee also states in the suit they were also retaliated against for speaking out.
According to the lawsuit, reported by Bloomberg Law, the employee referred to in the suit as Jane Doe, started working at the company in 2017 as a senior administrative assistant in the IT department.
Her first experience of inappropriate behavior occurred on the first day of work at what was called an “initiation lunch,” during which Doe felt pressured to take tequila shots and to share “an embarrassing secret” to everyone.
Various times she felt pressured to drink alcohol, participate in what’s referred to as “cube crawls” which were rampant with sexual comments and the groping of women. There was also a “game” that would be played call “Jackbox,” which required individuals to come up with “creative answers” to questions mostly sexual in nature.
It’s stated in the suit that Doe started to dress conservatively to help quell instances of sexual harassment, and that she began to distance herself from offsite dinners. The suit also covers instances of excessive drinking and sexual advances made by her supervisors.
When Doe made her concerns known, she was told to keep quiet as it could be “damaging” to the company. After this, she was faced with a hostile work environment due to her complaints.
To get out of the IT department, Doe applied for various other jobs at the company but was rejected. She was finally transferred to a different role, that paid less after she made her complaints known to Blizzard’s then-president Allen J. Brack.
Doe’s suit is just the latest in a string of Activision Blizzard news in the wake of reports the company fostered a toxic work culture. The allegations first came to light due to a lawsuit brought on by the state of California over bullying, harassment, and sexism in the workplace.
Activision Blizzard has since cleaned house, and has put plans in place to ensure it continues to evolve its talent and recruiting system to be more representative. It has formed a new Workplace Responsibility Committee that aims to “measure progress and ensure accountability.” For many current and former employees, steps being made by the company are too little too late or don’t go far enough to address employee concerns. Many are still calling for CEO Bobby Kotick to resign, and some have even joined a union.