Google's childcare workers are furious about the company ordering them back into the office without paying their transportation costs
- Google told the workers to return to the office Monday, even as it grants more flexibility to corporate employees.
- They slammed Google for making educators - who they said make $20 per hour - cover new transportation costs.
The workers who educate and take care of Google corporate employees' children during the day are furious over being hit with additional transportation costs as the company requires them to return to in-person work.Google has told its 148 San Francisco Bay Area
"We welcome feedback and will continue to work with any educator who has concerns as we start to reopen and return regular services," a Google spokesperson told Insider in a statement."Transportation isn't just a nice-to-have for us, it's fundamental if we want to do our job," Denise Belardes, a Google educator and AWU member, said in a statement to Insider via AWU.
"Options that cost money are not real options. We're not the ones making hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. We do not have the option to work from home as other Googlers. We need this stipend," Belardes added.The workers also pointed to recent Alphabet regulatory filings that said the company saved $268 million last quarter - which would amount to more than $1 billion annually - on "advertising and promotional as well as travel and entertainment expenses... primarily as a result of COVID-19" as employees work remotely. "The corporation has been investing some of [its] record profits in the wellbeing of the return to office plan for some of its workforce, including creating specialized privacy robots, and new technology to help with the transition," the petition said. "Clearly, Google can be an extraordinary problem solver, but is choosing not to solve this problem for its childcare workers."
Google has been more responsive to its corporate employees, however.
After some employees expressed frustration over the company's plans to return to the office by September under a "hybrid" plan, Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai said this week that the company would take a more flexible approach with roughly 20% of employees remaining fully remote.But when Google childcare workers raised the transportation issue to the company, its response, according to the petition, was: "transportation is just a perk, not a benefit."
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