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News Link • Employee and Employer Relations

Silicon Valley Struggles to Add Conservatives to Its Ranks

• By Deepa Seetharaman, Yoree Koh and Georgia Well

This summer, Twitter Inc.'s new diversity chief met employees to discuss whether they felt welcome at work. Among those who said they sometimes felt excluded, according to people familiar with the matter: conservatives.

The feedback reflects the strains in Silicon Valley as technology companies seek to bolster diversity of all kinds among their hundreds of thousands of employees. For the mostly left-leaning companies, that includes cultivating ideological diversity just as they are trying to with underrepresented groups like women and minorities. 

"There is a lot happening in the world, and we need inclusion now more than ever," Twitter's diversity chief, Candi Castleberry-Singleton, tweeted in August. 

Companies such as Facebook Inc., Google and Pinterest Inc. say doing so is important because their billions of users globally have a broad range of views and interests. And the perception that employee biases could seep into their products could damage their reputations. Tech executives who advocate for tolerance of various views also say it is in keeping with the industry's penchant for robust debate and transparency, at least within their walls.

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