Facebook joins Google, halts mandatory arbitration in sexual harassment cases

Facebook joins Google, halts mandatory arbitration in sexual harassment cases
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On Friday, Facebook followed Google’s lead and announced to employees that it would be ending its policy that required mandatory arbitration for employee sexual harassment claims.

The news was first reported by the Wall Street Journal, which noted that there was also an update to “its interoffice dating policy to require any executive at a director level or above to disclose if they are dating someone in the company.”

Facebook joins Google, Microsoft, and Uber as major tech companies that have changed their policy along similar lines.

Arbitration, a private dispute resolution process that resembles the public legal system, is often preferred by corporations as a way to reduce costs and scrutiny surrounding such complaints.

Facebook did not immediately respond to Ars’ request for comment.

UPDATE 7:12pm ET: Jonny Thaw, a Facebook spokesman, emailed Ars:

“Last year, we published our harassment policy — https://peoplepractices.fb.com/harassment-policy/ — because we believe that the more companies are open about their policies, the more we can all learn from one another. Today, we are publishing our updated Workplace Relationships policy and amending our arbitration agreements to make arbitration a choice rather than a requirement in sexual harassment claims. Sexual harassment is something that we take very seriously and there is no place for it at Facebook.

Here is the relationship policy: https://peoplepractices.fb.com/relationships-at-work/“