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Nike’s #MeToo – Executives Leave Company as Women Fight Harassment

The complaints made by the women included staff outing that ended at strip clubs, a forcible kiss and lewd email. 

Updated
World
2 min read
Fed up of sexual advances and inappropriate workplace behaviour that went unchecked despite complaints to the Human Resource, a group of Nike women decided to covertly conduct a survey.
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After Hollywood celebrities, European Jazz artists, professors and poets in India, an International Sportswear Company found itself grappling with the #MeToo movement. In March 2018, women at Nike's Beaverton, Ore, set off a storm, with many important men leaving the company or announcing that they soon would.

As reported by The New York Times, fed up of sexual advances and inappropriate workplace behaviour that went unchecked despite complaints to the Human Resource, a group of women decided to covertly conduct a survey. They asked their female peers if they had faced sexual harassment and gender discrimination at Nike. The findings were then dropped on the desk of Nike's chief executive Mike Parker.

Over the next few weeks, at least six top male executives quit or announced that they intended to. These included the President of the Nike brand Trevor Edwards, who was expected to succeed Parker, reported NYT.

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Subsequently, the chief executive Mark Parker apologised to those who felt excluded and felt like they didn’t have anyone to turn to about their situation, reported Market Watch.

On Tuesday, 8 May, The New York Times reported that four more top-level executives left the country amid probe into workplace behaviour at Nike: Steve Lesnard, the head of running in North America; Helen Kim, who oversaw Eastern North America; Simon Pestridge, a head of marketing for the performance categories and Tommy Kain, Nike's director of sports marketing.

The complaints made by the women included staff outing that ended at strip clubs, a supervisor bragging about the condoms in his backpack, a forcible kiss, and reference to receiver's breasts on email.

(With inputs from New York Times, Market Watch.)

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