Two government agencies are now squabbling over ethics allegations in Activision-Blizzard cases

    
20
Fighty smashy!

The Activision-Blizzard sexual discrimination and harassment lawsuit is back in the news this week, but for an unexpected reason. Readers will recall that the California DFEH, which is pursuing one of the lawsuits against the gaming company on behalf of victims, had filed an objection to the proposed settlement between the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Activision-Blizzard. But this past Friday, the EEOC filed its opposition to the DFEH’s objection on conflict of interest grounds, as apparently two of the DFEH attorneys who had been working on that case also used to work for the EEOC and at one point contributed to its similar case.

In its heavily redacted opposition, EEOC claims the DFEH violated Rule 1.11(a)(2) of the California Rules of Professional Conduct, which prevents an attorney from working on a case that he or she had worked on before at a different government agency without appropriate permission and screening. In other words, if the claim is true, the two lawyers might actually have filed an objection to a settlement they had previously worked on. According to the EEOC, the entire DFEH legal department should therefore be barred from working on the case, not just the two former EEOC staffers, though apparently those two have already resigned and been replaced and it’s not clear whether screening ever took place; the federal agency also argues that the DFEH’s intervention into the settlement should be tossed on the grounds that it was the product of “prohibited representation.” Conveniently for the EEOC, that would mean the settlement would go through unopposed.

It’s hard to say what exactly the EEOC hopes to achieve here or which workers or victims are being helped; we’ve previously covered labor organizers’ skepticism about the EEOC’s motivations in regard to the settlement, and it’s not a stretch to wonder whether we’re just watching a state-versus-federal turf war where the only winner is Activision-Blizzard.

Source: GIbiz
Update
Apparently, the Central District Court of California denied the DFEH’s application for an expedited intervention in the EEOC’s settlement; the court ordered the two sides to parlay over the jurisdictional tug-of-war and then refile under a more reasonable timeline. It might all be moot in the end, as the Communication Workers of America union, which is party to one of the lawsuits pending against Activision-Blizzard, has now also filed an objection to the EEOC’s settlement, arguing that the settlement figure is too low.
Advertisement

No posts to display

20
LEAVE A COMMENT

Please Login to comment
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:
Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Ken from Chicago

You can not make this crap up. SMH

Reader
Arktouros

The EEOC settlement clearly and directly states which victims are being helped in it’s settlement unlike the DFEH which still has to make it’s case and establish wrong doing and then get help for those victims. It isn’t a mystery nor hard to say as you can clearly and directly read the help the victims will receive in the settlement document.

As previously noted this whole thing comes off like a big pissing contest between the EEOC and DFEH and honestly this kinda explains a lot. Former colleagues who left the EEOC to work for the DFEH now on the same case as they were working in the EEOC is pretty bad faith when it comes to businesses and swapping jobs (to the point it’s actually against the rules as the EEOC has noted).

Really the only reason to question the EEOC or it’s settlement at this point is because you somehow think that the DFEH is going to spring out with some mega case against ActiBlizz that will net some sort of special scenario. That’s not going to happen. At the end of the day the DFEH results will just be money and compensation to those victims who can prove they were wronged which is exactly the same setup as the EEOC. No one “wins” these kinds of scenarios.

PlasmaJohn
Reader
Patreon Donor
Loyal Patron
PlasmaJohn

Didn’t a bunch of ex high profile government staffers get hired by Activision not too long ago? Is that shenanigans I smell?

Reader
Eamil

I saw a news bit about this on one of those gas pump screens when I was filling up. It’s kind of surreal that this story is so big that people who have never heard of Activision or Blizzard will hear at the gas pump that “government agencies are on Activision Blizzard for sexual harassment and gender discrimination.”

Reader
Utakata

Fighting over gnats while the elephant walks away…

Reader
Patreon Donor
Loyal Patron
Schlag Sweetleaf

.

good good.png
Reader
Utakata

Good, good…let the hate flow through you!

Reader
McGuffn

Better portrayal of the emperor than the last star wars movie.

Reader
David Goodman

Very, very loosely paraphrased:

– Lawyers in the DFEH used to work for the EEOC, on the EEOC investigation into Activision-Blizzard
– There was a written, contractual agreement that they wouldn’t step on each others’ toes, basically. EEOC investigates the harassment DFEH investigates the pay discrepancy. The DFEH violated that by bringing up harassment charges in their complaint
– There is a very significant conflict of interest when a lawyer, that worked for the EEOC investigating ActiBlizz, goes to the DFEH, then investigates Acti-Blizz, violates the terms of that written agreement, and then tries to get the courts to force the EEOC to stop it’s ruling.

And I think it’s pretty obvious what the EEOC’s problem with this is, and it doesn’t require any conspiracy theories.

Reader
Bruno Brito

Why is the header a Crowfall picture?

Reader
Jo Watt

Seems fitting enough to me. Doubtful anything good will come out of either in the end…