Activision Blizzard is currently in a spot of bother with multiple lawsuits levied against the company in relation to widespread sexual misconduct.
It's now looking like at least one of the lawsuits will be nearing its end, with a settlement of $18 million due to be approved by U.S District Judge Dale Fischer. This is specifically in relation to the lawsuit filed by U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and is separate from another lawsuit from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing.
The $18 million will go towards compensation for eligible claimants, with the publisher pledging continued policy enhancement, practices, and training to prevent harassment and discrimination in the workplace. Activision Blizzard will also engage with a third-party equal employment opportunity consultant approved by the EEOC.
Current CEO Bobby Kotick had the following to say about the settlement:
“The agreement we reached with the EEOC last year reflected our unwavering commitment to ensure a safe and equitable working environment for all employees. Our goal is to make Activision Blizzard a model for the industry, and we will continue to focus on eliminating harassment and discrimination from our workplace.
The court’s approval of this settlement is an important step in ensuring that our employees have mechanisms for recourse if they experienced any form of harassment or retaliation. We are gratified that the federal court that reviewed our settlement with the EEOC is finding that it is ‘fair, reasonable and adequate and advance(s) the public interest.’
The Court’s approval is a vital step in our journey to ensuring that everyone at Activision Blizzard always feels safe, heard and empowered. We hope the court’s findings – including its view that many of the objections raised about our settlement were inaccurate and speculative – will dispel any confusion that may exist. With all of the terms of the settlement reviewed and approved, we can move forward."
Activision Blizzard still has a number of lawsuits to content with, most recently by attorney Lisa Bloom on behalf of a current employee known as 'Jane Doe'.
The publisher is also in the midst of an acquisition from Microsoft, which by all accounts is likely to go through all the necessary approvals. It's speculated that current Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick will resign once the acquisition completes, and he has previously stated with publisher executives that he is open to resigning should the ongoing issues not be resolved "with speed".
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