Alibaba sets up committee, drafts code against employees’ misconduct
Published: Aug 12, 2021 09:23 PM


Alibaba Group said in an announcement on Thursday that it is drafting a code of conduct to prevent sexual harassment within the company, and has set up a committee to examine misconduct in the workplace. 

The move was the latest announcement following the firing of a manager who allegedly sexually assaulted one of his workers at China's largest e-commerce company, after forcing the female employee to drink to excess. The case has badly hurt the internet giant's reputation.

"Our internal investigation is almost finished, and we will share the findings with everyone as soon as possible," Alibaba said. 

In addition, the company said it had decided to enact a series of measures to prevent sexual harassment and assault.

A committee on the workplace environment was established at Alibaba as a decision-making body for matters related to but not limited to sexual harassment prevention. It will report directly to the Alibaba Group Board of Directors.

Committee members at the initial phase are five female senior management executives.

An independent working team will take charge of investigating any complaints and reports related to sexual harassment and sexual assault. 

A team called "ALI-WE" has been created to examine and eradicate inappropriate workplace behavior reported by employees, including behavior such as forced drinking culture and tasteless comments that make the workplace uncomfortable. 

"Employees will have unconditional support to refuse any type of forced drinking," the company stressed in its announcement. 

In a previous internal letter, Alibaba's chief executive Daniel Zhang vowed to change the company's culture and called the alleged assault a "humiliation for all Ali people," adding that "we must change."

Alibaba's Hong Kong-listed shares dropped 1.31 percent on Thursday. 

Police in Jinan, East China's Shandong Province - the scene of the incident - announced on Tuesday that an investigation of the sexual misconduct case involving Alibaba employees was underway, and the result will be made public in due course.

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