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Pinterest settles Magaziner lawsuit, pledges $50M for workplace reform

Sarah Doiron | WPRI >>

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Social media company Pinterest has settled a lawsuit regarding workplace culture that was brought by Rhode Island General Treasurer Seth Magaziner.

As part of the agreement, Pinterest has pledged to spend $50 million on diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives throughout its workplace and products.

Magaziner filed the lawsuit on behalf of the Employees Retirement System of Rhode Island and other shareholders who claimed the company’s board of directors “failed to respond to a widespread and pervasive culture of discriminating and retaliating against women and people of color.”

“We pushed for these sweeping reforms to support Pinterest’s employees with a fair and safe workplace, and to strengthen the company’s brand and performance by ensuring that the values of inclusiveness are made central to Pinterest’s identity,” Magaziner said. “This holistic approach will fundamentally support and positively impact Pinterest’s workplace culture in the years to come.”

The settlement is the first of its kind to embrace diversity goals around a company’s product, according to Magaziner.

The agreement requires Pinterest to release former employees from their non-disclosure agreements, which many said had prevented them from discussing the mistreatment they dealt with while working for the company.

Other major reforms include external, biannual pay equity audits that will “review performance ratings, promotions and compensation across gender and racial categories” as well as enhancements to the company’s recruiting, hiring and training practices.

The settlement also requires a board member to assist Pinterest’s CEO in ensuring the company follows through on the initiatives.