Hundreds of responses to #AppleToo reveal employee complaints of harassment, racism, and discrimination

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Apple Store logo (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Former and current Apple employees have set up a movement seeking to address employment issues within the company.
  • #AppleToo says that Apple employees face "persistent injustices" but that complaints are met with "a pattern of isolation, degradation, and gaslighting."
  • A call for employees to share their own stories has garnered more than 300 responses on the first day.
  • Complaints reportedly include themes of racism, harassment, and discrimination within Apple Retail and corporate levels of the business.

A call for employees to share stories of their work experiences at Apple as part of a movement called #AppleToo has garnered more than 300 responses that include stories of racism, harassment, and discrimination, iMore has learned.

Earlier this week it was reported that 15 former and current Apple employees had set up AppleToo as a place to help Apple employees realize "real change at Apple". The group says that stories of Apple workers collected and presented together "expose persistent patterns of racism, sexism, inequity, discrimination, intimidation, suppression, coercion, abuse, unfair punishment, and unchecked privilege." It also states that employees asking for "accountability and redress to the persistent injustices we witness or experience in our workplace" face "a pattern of isolation, degradation, and gaslighting." In a little over a day, the group has received hundreds of responses.

"One of the main things I can report so far is that there's a lot of racism, discrimination, and harassment, and a lot of it is from Retail stores," Cher Scarlett told iMore. Scarlett, one of #AppleToo's founding members and leading voices, says that responses also include complaints from within Apple Corporate, and AppleCare, and stated that responses revealed a "repetitive thread of reporting behavior and having it go nowhere, swept under the rug, or outright dismissed." Participants who've submitted stories have to go through a pretty detailed consent model, and Scarlett explained to us that these would need to be reviewed before any specifics from the various responses were shared, in case any had asked for them to be kept private. Some such stories are already public, such as that of Apple senior engineering program manager Ashley Gjøvik, who was placed on leave by the company whilst her complaints about sexism at Apple were investigated.

Whilst "a lot" of responses pertain to U.S. employees and former employees, Scarlett said "it's definitely not just here", noting several responses from Europe.

iMore has reached out to Apple for comment regarding this story.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9