A former Valve employee, who is claiming to have been wrongfully terminated is now suing the company for $3.1 Million claiming that the corporation exploited minors for free labor and discriminated against her for being transgender, further details to follow.
Cases like this are rarely straight forward, this one being no exception. Reports suggest the employee initially received fair treatment from Valve, having been recruited as a Spanish translator. In 2012 the employee requested to work remotely from Los Angeles where she would undergo Gender Re-assignment surgery, this request was accommodated in such a way that the employee could work from home, as the report suggests that said employee was also suffering from various social anxieties including depression.
However, problems rose when Valve decided to change the employees status within the corporation from “employee” to “independent contractor” despite there being no actual change in her duties. This meant that she lost several employee benefits, including health insurance and overtime pay despite Valve disputing that her change in status was irrelevant as she was still an employee of Valve as far as the law was concerned and that the change in her status was simply a miss-classification.
Frankly this is the least of Valve’s concerns in regards to the case and is only a factor that could be easily settled. It’s the other, previously mentioned allegations that are the problem. The Plaintiff alleges that supervisors within her department exploited young employees by asking them to translate work for free, under the false promise of paid work or even a full-time role within the company.
Without going too much into the nitty gritty details of the report, the former employee voice concerns having felt bad for the minors that she felt were being exploited, a complaint was filed with human resources alongside another complaint that her direct supervisor would also refer to her as “it” as a result of her surgery. Following the complaints the employee was terminated however Valve claims the termination was only the result of relocated her role to someone local in Washington.
As a result the former employee is claiming $1 million for general damages, another $1 million for loss of earnings, $1 million for special damages and finally $150,000 for unpaid wages.
However, in the Interest of not wanting to shed negative light on what could be an innocent company, Valve has categorically denied all of the allegations and is preparing to enter into a legal battle with the former employee.