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‘They Ended Up Taking My ID’: Black Google Employee Details How He Was Mistaken for a Trespasser, Stopped by Security on Company’s Campus

A Black associate product manager at Google claims he was stopped by company security after someone reported a possible trespassing

In a now-viral post shared to his Twitter account last week, Angel Onuoha, wrote that he was riding his bike “around Google’s campus and somebody called security on me because they didn’t believe I was an employee.” 

Angel Onuoha, a Google employee, says he was ‘escorted’ after called in thinking he was trespassing. (Photo: Angel Onuoha’s Medium photo)

The Harvard graduate added that he “had to get escorted by two security guards to verify my ID badge.” The post garnered over 13,000 re-posts and over 91,000 likes. 

In a follow up post shared on Wednesday, Sept. 22, Onuoha said there were several inquiries in his DMs “asking for the full story.”

“They ended up taking my ID badge away from me later that day and I was told to call security if I had a problem with it,” Onuoha alleged. “And that was after holding me up for 30 minutes causing me to miss my ride home.” 

Onuoha did not reveal where the incident took place. However, according to his LinkedIn account, he works at Google’s Mountain View, California, headquarters.

A spokesperson from Google told Forbes that the matter was being taken “very seriously” and that they were getting in contact with Onuoha, who they say “was having issues with his badge due to an administrative error and contacted the reception team for help.” They later explained that “after they were unable to resolve the issue, the security team was called to look into and help resolve the issue.”

“More broadly, one step we’ve taken recently to decrease badging incidents is to make clear that employees should leave investigating these kinds of access concerns to our security team. Our goal is to ensure that every employee experiences Google as an inclusive workplace and that we create a stronger sense of belonging for all employees,” the statement concluded. 

Several people shared their experiences with discrimnation in the tech world but more specific to Google. 

Twitter user Kimberley Kirk, responded to Onuoha’s post and without specifying when the alleged incident took place said, “Walked into G with my badge prominently displayed/laptop in hand, going in door to building while someone else was headed out, she asked me who I was/do I belong there, and berated me for others ‘just letting me in.’” 

Another social media user, Albert Richardson, echoed a story similar to that of Onuoha. Richardson responded to Onuoha’s post by writing, “Dawg I worked as security at Google and got security called on me. Smh.”

Richardson said he was on his lunch break “in one of the micro kitchens” when he received a call about a “suspicious individual in that area” on campus. The man claimed, “I spent a hour looking for myself.”

In 2014, Google released its employment diversity numbers, where it showed 83 percent of tech employees were men, with 60 percent of the entire tech workforce being white and another 34 percent being Asian.

Between 2014 and 2020, Black representation at top tech companies overall increased by only 1 percent, according to a report from Tech Monitor. 

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