In the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision on Friday to overturn Roe v. Wade, Google’s chief people officer Fiona Cicconi sent a staff-wide email to employees informing them of Google’s response to the ruling. Among other things, the email highlights that Googlers can “apply for relocation without justification” and that people in charge of the relocation process “will be aware of the situation” in assessing their requests. In an email last August reported by Bloomberg, Google told employees that of 10,000 requests over the prior few months to work remotely or relocate, 85 percent were approved.
The Supreme Court’s ruling does not make abortion illegal throughout the US — instead, it leaves the decision to individual state governments. A number of states have immediately restricted abortion rights, including Louisiana, Missouri, and Kentucky. Other states, including California, where Google is headquartered, have vowed to protect abortion rights within their borders.
Here’s the letter in full:
This morning the US Supreme Court issued a ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization that rolls back Roe v. Wade.
This is a profound change for the country that deeply affects so many of us, especially women. Everyone will respond in their own way, whether that’s wanting space and time to process, speaking up, volunteering outside of work, not wanting to discuss it at all, or something else entirely. Please be mindful of what your co-workers may be feeling and, as always, treat each other with respect.
Equity is extraordinarily important to us as a company, and we share concerns about the impact this ruling will have on people’s health, lives, and careers. We will keep working to make information on reproductive healthcare accessible across our products and continue our work to protect user privacy.
To support Googlers and their dependents, our US benefits plan and health insurance covers out-of-state medical procedures that are not available where an employee lives and works. Googlers can also apply for relocation without justification, and those overseeing this process will be aware of the situation. If you need additional support, please connect 1:1 with a People Consultant via [link to internal tool redacted].
We will be arranging support sessions for Googlers in the US in the coming days. These will be posted to Googler News.
Please don’t hesitate to lean on your Google community in the days ahead and continue to take good care of yourselves and each other.
Google spokesperson Nicolas Lopez confirmed to The Verge that “there have been no changes” to the company’s relocation policy following the Supreme Court’s ruling. This means Google is just reminding employees of their options, rather than providing them with a new benefit.
Update 9:12PM ET: Added additional information on Google’s relocation policies.
Update June 25th, 4:49PM ET: Updated to clarify that Google’s relocation policy has been in place prior to the ruling.