Apple faces South Asian gender discrimination lawsuit

Apple lost an early round in a gender discrimination lawsuit brought in a California state court by a female engineer from India who claims that her two managers — one from India, the other from Pakistan — treated her as they would in their own countries: as a subservient.

Apple faces South Asian gender discrimination lawsuit. Image: Apple Park in Cupertino, California
Apple Park in Cupertino, California

Robert Burnson for Bloomberg News:

Anita Nariani Schulze is part of the Sindhi minority — she is Hindu, with ancestry in the Sindh region of what is now Pakistan. Her complaint alleges that her senior and direct managers, both male, consistently excluded her from meetings while inviting her male counterparts, criticized her, micromanaged her work, and deprived her of bonuses, despite positive performance evaluations and significant team contributions.

Schulze claims the managers’ animus reflects sexism, racism, religious bias and discrimination on the basis of national origin…

In a tentative ruling on Wednesday, Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Sunil R. Kulkarni rejected Apple’s request to toss out the suit. While not ruling on the merits of the case, Kulkarni said Schulze had adequately supported her legal claims. Apple had argued her claims weren’t specific enough and were based on stereotypes.

But the judge rejected Schulze’s request to represent a class of female Apple employees who suffered job discrimination over the last four years. He agreed with Apple that she didn’t show a pattern of discrimination that could be applied to a broader group.

MacDailyNews Take: Multinational — and, hence, multicultural — corporations like Apple face an exceedingly wide range of challenges, including gender discrimination and other lawsuits.

Cisco currently faces a similar case about which Mark Chandler, Cisco’s Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, blogged in November 2020:

You might have read about a claim brought against Cisco by California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) on behalf of a current Cisco employee, claiming that the employee (we’ll call him “G.,” not his real initial) was denied opportunities by his manager on the basis of G.’s Indian caste. Because the claim of caste discrimination is novel in the American legal system, it has received a lot of attention…

For those not familiar with the concept of caste, caste refers to a system of dividing society into hereditary classes, some of whom inherit exclusive privileges…

The Cisco investigation was thorough and complete. We found no evidence that G. was discriminated or retaliated against on the basis of caste. G. also had the opportunity to seek a thorough second-level review of the outcome of the initial investigation, which was conducted, and the initial findings of no caste discrimination or retaliation were confirmed. Given our principles, had we found discrimination or retaliation, we would have remediated it, regardless of the fact that there is no legal basis in the US for a claim of caste discrimination.


    1. In this case, literally yes.

      The American judge assigned to this case is of South Asian decent, and comes from an engineering background. I can’t imagine a better person to have the legal, cultural, and subject matter expertise to understand the factors at play.

      1. Not to mention he is a Democrat. This complainant hit the jackpot. Apple, get out your checkbook. Lately, with all the “hate on Asians” as the flavor of the month, and here I thought only Baskin-Robbins had more flavors, fake woke will be coming at you fast. Let’s hope SJW Tim is a fast learner. He’s about to be schooled.

  1. Apple has only had White make oppressive racist CEOs. It needs to fire Tim Cook and hire a female (biological or intellectual) of color or tint and begin to make amends for all the damage done by the prior White leaders/oppressors.

  2. Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
    With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
    Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
    A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
    Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
    Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
    Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
    The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
    “Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
    With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

    —“The New Colossus,” by Emma Lazarus

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