April Christina Curley, a former Black diversity recruiter for Google, has called out the tech giant on social media, as she claimed she was sacked for pushing against the company’s ‘racist recruitment practices.
The Black queer woman who joined Google in 2014, said she was hired by the company to “fundamentally shift the relationship (or lack thereof) that Google had with Historically Black Colleges and Universities,” claiming that the tech giant has previously “NEVER hired an HBCU student into a tech role.”
A white female manager informed Curley that her Baltimore accent was a “disability.” Ultimately, Curley tweeted that she was fired for calling out “racist recruitment and hiring practices” at Google.
See what she wrote below;
I’m finna tell yall why @Google fired me- their MOST successful diversity recruiter in the history of their company- with the receipts to support that statement.
Reading about what happened to @timnitGebru at Google is both triggering and yet super encouraging. While I don’t want to capitalize off of her moment, I do want to share my experience as a black queer woman at Google.
On September 11, 2020, I was terminated from Google. Even having to type those words still feels fucking awful. I’m admittedly still processing and working through all of the emotions that surround being fired from my whole ass job.
I’ll try to keep this thread short and write a more robust medium article at some point but here’s what I’ll say…
In 2014, I was hired at Google to fundamentally shift the relationship (or lack thereof) that Google had with Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Before my role existed, Google had NEVER, and I mean fucking NEVER hired an HBCU student into a tech role-
Please read that shit again. It’s as egregious as it sounds. At the time of my departure, I had single handedly increased Google’s black engineering hiring from HBCUs by over 300%. Meaning- I brought in over 300 Black and Brown students from HBCUs who were hired into eng roles
The reason Google never hired an HBCU student straight out of undergrad into one of their key engineering roles is because they didn’t believe talent existed at these institutions- until I showed up.
When I started at Google, I quickly became aware of all the racist shit put in place to keep black and brown students out of their pipeline. I routinely called out shady recruitment practices such as “screening out” resumes of students with “unfamiliar” school/university names.
In many instances, Google engineers who were interviewing HBCU candidates would leave demeaning and absolutely insulting feedback about students which would ultimately result in a rejection at the hiring committee stage.
In several cases, students were questioned IN INTERVIEWS about the quality of the computer science curriculum that they were receiving at their HBCU and criticized for “not meeting the bar” compared to “elite”, white institutions.
Every single day for six years, I fought tirelessly to provide Black and Brown students the opportunity (that they were qualified for and rightly deserved) to launch a career in tech.
Often, I found myself arguing and pleading with white women who lead recruitment teams for internships and full time roles, BEGGING for students who were MORE than qualified to be considered for offers.
Because of my adamant advocacy of black and brown students to be fairly and justly considered for roles at Google, I experienced active abuse and retaliation from several managers who harassed me- and many other black women.
Despite STELLAR performance metrics which can be supported by multiple data points, I was repeatedly denied promotions, had my compensation cut, placed on performance improvement plans, denied leadership opportunities, yelled at, intentionally excluded from meetings, etc.
Ultimately my last manager, his manager and HR decided that the best way to shut me up was to fire me. My last manager had his ego bruised FROM JUMP when I refused to discuss my sexuality with him (once asking me which of my teammates I would sleep with-TF)
My skip-level manager, a white woman, told me VERBATIM that the way I speak (oftentimes with a heavy Baltimore accent) was a disability that I should disclose when meeting with folks internally.
This white woman also told me that she never felt comfortably supporting my work because she was “intimidated” by me and therefore never considered me for leadership opportunities.
I could write FOR DAYS about alllllll the awfully racist recruitment and hiring practices I saw at Google, WITH RECEIPTS. But I’ll stop here for today and summarize my sentiment by saying…
FUCK GOOGLE AND FUCK THE WAY GOOGLE TREATS BLACK WOMEN and BLACK PEOPLE. THEY DO NOT WANT BLACK TALENT.
Take it from ME- their most successful BLACK QUEER WOMAN recruiter who they fired in the middle of a MF pandemic because they were tired of hearing me call them out on their racist bullshit.
I’ll tweet more shit as I find the energy to do so.