In the latest instance of a high-profile gaming studio being accused of creating a hostile working environment for employees, Bungie is now being sued for wrongful termination by a former HR manager after allegations of racial bias at the company. News of the allegations against the Destiny 2 developer comes just months after Bungie won a landmark lawsuit against a racist Destiny player who harassed the company’s employees and their families.
Bungie’s former HR manager alleges she was wrongfully terminated after reporting racial bias at the developer
As initially reported by IGN, Bungie is being sued by a former HR manager over charges of retaliation and wrongful termination.
Ingrid Alm, who was hired by Bungie as an HR manager in 2022, is accusing the company of terminating her employment after she recommended a supervisor receive diversity training. Alm’s recommendation came after the one black employee on the supervisor’s 50-person team, referred to as “James Smith” in the lawsuit, expressed concerns that he was being racially targeted.
Alm claims that she faced “hostility and denial” from her managers at the Destiny 2 developer after issuing the recommendation.
Already facing pushback for her recommendation, Alm’s lawsuit alleges that she was subject to further hostility after reaching out to Bungie’s director of equity and inclusion, Dr. Courtney Benjamin.
Alm’s lawsuit states that her supervisor retaliated against her for reaching out to Benjamin, giving Alm a written warning and moving her to the “needs improvement” category on her next performance review. After a supervisor suggested she should leave the company, Alm’s access to her work e-mail and Bungie’s internal network was cut off. She was eventually told that her resignation, which Alm claims she never submitted, had been accepted.
According to the IGN report, Bungie’s response to the lawsuit “denies almost every part of Alm’s narrative without further context.” A jury trial is set for January 22, 2024 to determine whether Alm is owed the lost wages, emotional distress damages, and attorney fees she is seeking in the case.
Bungie is far from the only developer to be accused of creating a hostile work environment in recent years. News of the allegations against Bungie comes the same week as five former Ubisoft executives were arrested on charges of harassment and sexual assault.