Image Courtesy: Reader’s Digest

According to an internal memo acquired by The Verge, WhatsApp’s Spanish language content moderators and customer care employees are pressing for equal compensation. They claim they have been denied the $2 per hour fee provided to other bilingual contractors. Accenture, a third-party contracting business based in Austin, Texas, employs the personnel.

“For some years now, Accenture, Facebook, and Whatsapp have refused equal treatment and remuneration to Spanish language contingent workers,” employees claim in a letter. “It is an insult for corporations like Facebook and Accenture to openly support diversity while failing to provide it to their own employees.” Accenture defines a large portion of its workforce as contingent, which means that employees are recruited as contractors for a certain length of time.

Workers are asking that the $2 premium be paid to Spanish language contractors, as well as back pay for the money they have lost out on since being employed. According to one employee, they were told that in order to obtain the bonus, they would need to learn Arabic or Portuguese. “I’m already bilingual,” the employee claims in an interview with The Verge. Nonetheless, the policy remained unchanged.

The letter was addressed to Mark Zuckerberg, WhatsApp CEO Will Cathcart, and Julie Sweet, CEO of Accenture. It was published today on Facebook Workplace, the company’s internal communication tool. It now has 89 signatures from workers of Facebook, WhatsApp, and Accenture.

According to the internal letter, the letter came after workers fought for equal pay for years. “Managers and HR representatives for Accenture in Austin, Texas have not only disregarded allegations of discrimination for several years now, but they have also actively involved in ensuring this grave injustice goes unrecognised and unaddressed,” according to the note.

An Accenture spokeswoman told The Verge in an email, “We strive to ensure that all of our people are rewarded properly and equitably with market appropriate compensation.” We are firm in our commitment to equality and have zero tolerance for racism, bigotry, or any kind of hatred.”


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