Labor Department Sues Google Over Compensation Data


The Labor Department is going to court to force Google to turn over compensation data during an anti-discrimination audit.

The administrative lawsuit filed Wednesday claims Google has withheld compensation data and other information requested by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs as part of a routine audit of the Internet giant’s equal opportunity program.

The department has asked an administrative law judge to compel Google as a federal contractor to comply or cancel Google’s current government contracts and bar the company from entering into future contracts.

“Despite many opportunities to produce this information voluntarily, Google has refused to do so,” OFCCP Acting Director Thomas M. Dowd said in a statement.

In a statement, Google said it has provided hundreds of thousands of records over the last year, including compensation. The company is balking at turning over the private information of employees.

“The handful of OFCCP requests that are the subject of the complaint are overbroad in scope, or reveal confidential data, and we’ve made this clear to the OFCCP, to no avail,” the statement said. “These requests include thousands of employees’ private contact information which we safeguard rigorously. We hope to continue working with OFCCP to resolve this matter.”

Cliff Palefsky, an employment attorney who represents employees in labor disputes, said the concern over employees’ private information “seems like a pretty weak basis to refuse to give information to the government.”

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SOURCE: USA Today, Jessica Guynn