Black Google employee stopped by security because they didn’t believe he worked there

Google Office Return Delay
Google Office Return Delay
Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

A Black associate product manager at Google claimed he was stopped by security as they didn’t believe he was an employee.

Earlier this week, Harvard graduate Angel Onuoha said he was riding a bike around a Google campus when someone called security on him.

He said two security guards “escorted” him to verify his ID.

Writing on Twitter, Onuoha said: “Riding my bike around Google’s campus and somebody called security on me because they didn’t believe I was an employee. Had to get escorted by two security guards to verify my ID badge.”

He later added that his ID badge was taken away from him later that day, and was told to “call security if [he] had a problem with it”.

Replying to Onuoha, Twitter user Albert Richardson said he used to work security at Google and had security called on him, too.

Richardson said he was having his lunch in one of the micro kitchens when his radio went off.

He was asked to check out the second-floor micro kitchen as an employee had reported a “suspicious individual” in the area.

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“I spent an hour looking for myself,” he wrote.

Another person shared that their black friend who works in IT dresses formally each day because if he doesn’t, he fears the cops will be called on him. She said he also wears his staff ID, even when no one else does.

Leslie Miley, who previously worked in an engineering leadership role at the firm, also replied to the tweet saying that although Google has changed its policies, “changing people is harder.”

Miley previously shared a thread outlining how one of his colleagues tried to stop him from coming into the office. Despite his badge being clearly visible, he said the Googler followed him asking him to show his badge before running in front of him.

In the same thread, he highlighted how the signage on the doors in 2019 “clearly indicate that if you look different, you should be considered a threat.”

Although it’s not clear which campuses these incidents occurred in, black employees facing discrimination at work sadly isn’t a rare occurrence.

A 2020 report from Gallup found that around one in four black and Hispanic workers in the US have faced discrimination in the workplace in the last year.

A recent survey found that most black workers are not looking forward to a return to the office post-pandemic due to micro-aggressions, glass ceilings, and discrimination.

Google previously said they were aiming to double the number of Black+ employees by 2025, along with increasing the number of people from underrepresented backgrounds in senior roles by 30 per cent. Despite the company reporting that 8.8 per cent of last year’s hires were “Black+”, staff retention has been an issue,Bloomberg reports.

In a statement to indy100, a Google spokesperson said they take Onuoha’s concerns “very seriously” and have been in touch with him to look into the incident further.

“We learned that the employee was having issues with his badge due to an administrative error and contacted the reception team for help. After they were unable to resolve the issue, the security team was called to look into and help resolve the issue,” the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson added: “More broadly, one step we’ve taken recently to decrease badging incidents is to make clear that employees should leave investigating these kinds of access concerns to our security team. Our goal is to ensure that every employee experiences Google as an inclusive workplace and that we create a stronger sense of belonging for all employees.”

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