Google memo to employees on Roe v. Wade overturn

Shaun H. Ruff


Google CEO Sundar Pichai speaks at a panel at the CEO Summit of the Americas hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on June 09, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.

Anna Moneymaker | Getty Images

Google sent a companywide email Friday about the historic Supreme Court ruling overturning Roe v. Wade, explaining employees in affected states can apply for relocation without explaining why.

“This is a profound change for the country that deeply effects so many of us, especially women,” wrote Google Chief People officer Fiona Cicconi in an email to workers, viewed by CNBC. “Googlers can also apply for relocation without justification, and those overseeing this process will be aware of the situation.”

The note doesn’t say how many requests the company would approve and makes no promises. The company is still in the process of assigning relocations for employees who don’t want to come back into their assigned physical office due to the company’s return-to-office policy, which began in April.

Google has more than 30 locations across the U.S.

Cicconi also said it will be providing “support sessions” to employees in the coming days.

Google’s statement comes as corporations around the country, including Amazon and Meta, say they are will pay for employees to travel to receive abortions if they are in states where it is banned after the Supreme Court’s decision on Friday to overturn Roe v. Wade, rolling back the federal right to receive an abortion.

When the ruling first leaked, Google said it would provide travel benefits for employees seeking abortion care out of state. The company’s U.S. benefits plan and health insurance plan for full-time employees cover out-of-state medical producers that are not available where an employee lives and works, Cicconi added in the memo.

When CNBC reached out for comment Friday morning, a spokesperson said the company had nothing to add. It has not responded to requests for comment on Cicconi’s email or relocation details.

The company has also not responded to requests for comment on whether it will comply with potential law enforcement requests for data related to users. Last month, a group of 42 Democratic lawmakers urged the Google CEO Sundar Pichai in a letter to stop collecting and keeping unnecessary or non-aggregated location data that could be used to identify people seeking abortions.

Here’s the full memo from Google chief people officer Fiona Cicconi:

Hi everyone, 

This morning the US Supreme Court issued a ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization that rolls back Roe v. Wade.

This is a profound change for the country that deeply effects so many of us, especially women. Everyone will respond in their own way, whether that’s wanting space and time to process, speaking up, volunteering outside of work, not wanting to discuss it at all , or something else entirely. Please be mindful of what your co-worker many be feeling and, as always, treat each other with respect. 

Equity is extraordinarily important to us as a company, and we share concerns about the impact this ruling will have on people’s health, lives and careers. We will keep working to make information on reproductive healthcare accessible across our products and continue our work to protect user privacy.

To support Googlers and their dependents, our US benefits plan and health insurance covers out-of-state medical procedures that are not available where an employee live and works. Googlers can also apply for relocation without justification, and those overseeing this process will be aware of the situation. If you need additional support, please connect 1:1 with a People Consultant.

We will be arranging support sessions for Googlers in the US in the coming days. These will be posted to Googler News.

Please don’t hesitate to lean on your Google community in the days ahead and continue to take good care of yourselves and each other.


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