Apple CEO Tim Cook recently encouraged any conservative employees who felt discriminated against due to their political views to speak with him directly.
Business Insider reports that Apple CEO Tim Cook recently encouraged conservative employees at the Silicon Valley giant to speak with him directly if they felt discriminated against or shunned due to their beliefs. Cook’s statement was in response to a question at the company’s annual shareholder meeting; the questioner stated that a friend of hers worked at Apple and this friend did not “share the left-wing view” and suggested that her friend felt discriminated against by her fellow workers as a result.
The questioner asked Cook what he would advise her friend to do; Cook responded that one of Apple’s most deeply held beliefs is that of openness whether that be to be people of different ethnicities, religions or political beliefs. “I would encourage them to come talk to me if they have an issue,” Cook said. He further added that any employees that feel they are facing discrimination should also speak with the company’s head of human resources, Deirdre O’Brien. Cook stated: “I would really encourage them to say something.”
Before this question was asked, Apple shareholders voted on a proposal that would require each company director to disclose their personal “ideology” to shareholders, apparently in an effort to ensure that conservative viewpoints were present on Apple’s board of directors. Justin Danhof, an attorney at the National Center for Public Policy Research who suggested the proposal stated:
When the company takes overtly political, legal, and policy positions, it would benefit to have voices from both sides of the aisle in the room. At this company, the consideration of conservative viewpoints appears to be discouraged if not altogether forbidden.
The proposal was almost unanimously voted down with only 1.7 percent of shareholders voting in favor of it. Cook stated that he takes no interest in an employees ideology, focusing instead on their skills. “I don’t check people at the door as to who they are and what they believe,” he said. “I care about skills and capabilities and contributions.”