Apple employees have written an open letter to CEO Tim Cook, stating that their “experiences with the People team in dealing with harrassment and discrimination” have left them vulnerable.
Employees working for tech giant Apple have published an open letter, documenting concerns about their privacy as well as the way in which HR teams have handled abuse, discrimination and harrassment claims within the company.
Alleging that hundreds of workers have documented their stories of mistreatment using “internal channels”, the staff now express that they are calling attention to their experiences publicly to “show how much better [Apple] can do”.
In particular, employees have called on the firm to fulfill its promise of inclusion, diversity, and equity and to create a work environment where everyone feels safe.
Apple workers claim their privacy has been breached through the expectation that workers should sync their personal iClouds to their work devices, resulting in many workers’ personal data being expected to be searchable by Apple.
As such, staff call for written HR policies which would state cause to be necessary before Apple is permitted to search through personal accounts.
Furthermore, in such cases, workers, the letter states, should be informed of their right to an objective third-party to determine what can be searched to allow for redaction of digital materials.
Another grievance raised in the letter is the issue of pay and transparency linked to this.
To combat this, the company has been urged to give staff and candidates a transparent look at salary or hourly rates per role, allowing them to negotiate fair wages.
Employees also call for an audit for all promotions and performance reviews which would reduce gender, racial, disability and heteronormative biases that may lead to wage gaps and a lack of opportunity and compensation.
Finally, the letter calls for the People team, Employee Relations, Business Conduct, and Leadership to be held accountable.
They state these teams should look past protecting the company’s image and instead, also focus on workers’ psychological safety which would allow them to report issues, obtain information in a way that upholds employment law, respects privacy and protects them from suppression of rights and discrimination.
Therefore, the letter urges an unbiased third-party audit of Apple’s reporting structure, People and Employee Relations teams, Business Conduct, and all executive leadership.
Through this, it hopes to attain a thorough re-investigation of all reports and results of racism, discrimination, abuse, harassment, concerted activity suppression, and retaliation following this audit.
There has currently been no official response from the company or CEO Tim Cook regarding these claims.
Monica Sharma is an English Literature graduate from the University of Warwick. As Editor for HRreview, her particular interests in HR include issues concerning diversity, employment law and wellbeing in the workplace. Alongside this, she has written for student publications in both England and Canada. Monica has also presented her academic work concerning the relationship between legal systems, sexual harassment and racism at a university conference at the University of Western Ontario, Canada.