Court of Appeal Denies Request to Dismiss CRD’s Case Against Activision Blizzard
October 21, 2022
For Immediate Release
CRD’s lawsuit challenging sex-based discrimination and harassment at Activision Blizzard will continue
Sacramento – The Second Appellate District of the Court of Appeal has denied Activision Blizzard’s (Activision) petition for a writ of mandate, through which Activision sought to have the Civil Rights Department’s (CRD) civil rights case against the gaming company and related entities dismissed.
In July 2021, the CRD filed a lawsuit against Activision in Los Angeles County Superior Court, alleging that women were subjected to constant sexual harassment, including groping, comments, and advances, and that the company’s executives and human resources personnel knew of the harassment and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent the unlawful conduct, and instead retaliated against women who complained. The complaint further alleges that the company fostered a sexist culture and paid women less than men, and assigned women to lower level jobs than men.
Activision first asked the trial court to dismiss the CRD’s lawsuit on the alleged ground that the CRD failed to comply with its pre-filing obligations before bringing this lawsuit. The trial court declined to do so, and now the Court of Appeal has denied Activision’s request for the extraordinary remedy of a writ of mandate directing the trial court to dismiss the CRD’s case.
“With the Court of Appeal’s denial of a writ of mandate, the CRD will continue litigating this case to enforce the civil rights guarantees in the Fair Employment and Housing Act and the California Equal Pay Act on behalf of women who worked for Activision,” said CRD Director Kevin Kish. “The Court of Appeal’s ruling allows the CRD to continue pursuing relief for the thousands of women in California who have suffered sex-based discrimination, harassment, and retaliation as Activision workers.”
If you identify as a woman who has worked as a contractor for, or who has been a direct employee of, Activision, you may contact the CRD regarding this matter by email at Blizzard.DFEH@dfeh.ca.gov or by phone at (833) 525-4333.
The case is captioned California Civil Rights Department v. Activision Blizzard, Inc., et al., Case No. 21STCV26571.
The CRD’s lawsuit is separate from an action brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, captioned EEOC v. Activision Blizzard, Inc. et al., Case No. 2:21-CV-07682-JEM (C.D. Cal.)
CRD is the state agency charged with enforcing California’s civil rights laws. Formerly known as the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), the mission of the CRD is to protect the people of California from unlawful discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, and state-fund programs and activities, and from hate violence and human trafficking. For more information, visit calcivilrights.ca.gov.