Google’s childcare staff are enraged that the corporation has sent them back to work without compensating them for their transportation costs.
The staff who teach and care for the children of Google corporate employees during the day are enraged at the prospect of incurring increased transportation costs as a result of the company’s requirement that they return to in-person jobs.
Google has instructed its 148 childcare staff in the San Francisco Bay Area to report to work on Monday, despite the fact that the company’s shuttle services remain closed and several corporate employees are permitted to work remotely, according to a statement from the Alphabet Workers Union.
As a result, Google is pushing childcare employees, who receive an average of $20 per hour according to the AWU, to find alternate means of transportation to work. This could be expensive, especially for the many employees who live far from Google’s campuses due to the Bay Area’s high cost of living, according to AWU.
In response, the staff launched a petition Friday with the help of the AWU, requesting that Google offer a $1,500 monthly transportation stipend before the company’s shuttle services resume. As of Friday evening, the petition had garnered more than 250 signatures from employees at Google and other Alphabet subsidiaries.
“We welcome input and will continue to work with any educator who has concerns as we begin the process of reopening and restoring normal services,” a Google spokesperson said in a statement.
“Transportation is not a luxury for us; it is essential for us to do our jobs,” Denise Belardes, a Google educator and AWU member, told Insider via AWU.
“Options that require payment are not genuine options. We are not the ones who earn hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. We do not have the same choice as other Googlers to work from home. This stipend is necessary “Belardes continued.
Additionally, the staff cited recent Alphabet regulatory disclosures stating that the corporation saved $268 million last quarter — more than $1 billion annually — on “advertising and promotional as well as travel and entertainment expenditures… mainly as a consequence of COVID-19” as employees function remotely.
“The company has invested a portion of [its] record income in the well-being of the return to office plan for a portion of its employees, including the creation of advanced privacy robots and innovative technologies to assist in the transition,” the petition said. “Clearly, Google is an exceptional problem solver, but has chosen to avoid resolving this issue for its childcare employees.”
Google, on the other hand, has been more open to its corporate workers.
Following employee outrage over the company’s plans to return to the office by September under a “hybrid” strategy, Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai announced this week that the company would take a more flexible approach, with approximately 20% of workers remaining entirely remote.
However, when Google childcare employees raised the issue of transportation with the company, the company responded, according to the petition, “transportation is a perk, not a profit.”