Bethesda Employees Reportedly Pressuring Leadership Over Lackluster Support Following Roe v. Wade
Despite remaining relatively quiet when plans to overturn Roe v. Wade were first revealed, the games industry came out en masse once it had been officially overturned. Bethesda was one such studio which relesed a statement of support for reproductive rights, but a new report from Kotaku suggests that opinions on the matter are all but unanimous behind the scenes.
According to Kotaku, employees at Bethesda and its parent company ZeniMax are voicing their frustrations as they accuse both companies of refusing to clearly support employees in need of reproductive healthcare. As a result, tensions have apparently risen from within, as there are some employees that allegedly support the Supreme Court's decision, going so far as to quote Bible verses and have "water cooler" Slack channels locked.
Kotaku has also apparently been told that Microsoft's recent commitment to cover travel expenses for those seeking reproductive healthcare outside of their home states won't extend to Bethesda employees despite the recent acquisition. The information allegedly comes from a former ZeniMax employee who reveals that "a lot of people quit" after it became clear the company would not be completely absorbed by Microsoft.
It's pretty easy to see why tensions might be high at Bethesda, especially given where the company has studios based. Bethesda Austin and Arkane Austin are both based in Texas, a highly Republican state which has already revealed intentions to ban all abortions from the moment of fertalization. Women who work in these studios are reportedly becoming extremely concerned over the studio's reported lack of commitment, and are demanding more clarity in how they will be supported.
Some of the demands women at these studios are making include contraceptive access via the company's health plan, making sure no women are discrimintaed against for being pregnant, allowing employees to relocate in affected states, and accommodate staff based on their state laws. According to an internal email seen by Kotaku, only one of these requests were acknowledged.
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