July 17 (UPI) -- Google must partially comply with a Labor Department's request for 19 years' worth of employee pay data as part of a gender discrimination investigation, a San Francisco-area judge ruled.
Earlier this year, the Labor Department sued Google for information concerning how much it paid more than 25,000 employees over the course of 19 years. Federal investigators said they found "systemic compensation disparities against women pretty much across the entire workforce."
Administrative Law Judge Steven Berlin, though, said the request for data was too broad and raised privacy concerns. Instead, he ruled, Google must give the Labor Department pay data for up to 8,000 employees from 2014-17.
Google welcomed the decision and said it would comply with the order. In a blog post, Eileen Naughton, vice president of people operations, said the company's own analysis of the pay data found no gender pay gap.
"While we're pleased with Friday's recommended decision, we remain committed to treating, and paying, people fairly and without bias with regard to factors like gender or race. We are proud of our practices and leadership in this area, and we look forward to working constructively with [the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs], as we complete this review and in the future.
Labor Department attorney Janet Herald told The Hill the government sees the ruling as a vindication of its investigation.
"We're pleased that Google is saying it's going to comply with this decision," she said. "We really wish Google had agreed two years ago to produce this information. "Our preliminary analysis revealed very concerning and serious pay discrepancies between men and women performing the same work at Google."