Activision Blizzard has reached a settlement with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which filed a lawsuit against the publisher over harassment and discrimination. The company will pay $18 million to make amends with employees who have experienced unequal treatment of any kind.
According to the agreement with the EEOC, only people employed by the company no later than September 1, 2016, will be able to receive compensation from the fund.
The publisher will divide any amounts not used for eligible claimants between charities that “advance women in the video game industry or promote awareness around harassment and gender equality issues as well as company diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.”
The EEOC has been investigating Activision Blizzard since 2018 and notified the company of its findings on June 15. As part of the settlement, the publisher also pledged to upgrade policies and practices to prevent harassment and discrimination in its workplaces, as well as appoint a third-party consultant who will report their findings to the company’s board of directors and the EEOC over the next three years.
“I am sorry that anyone had to experience inappropriate conduct, and I remain unwavering in my commitment to make Activision Blizzard one of the world’s most inclusive, respected, and respectful workplaces,” CEO Bobby Kotick said, thanking the EEOC for its “constructive engagement.”