After Long Silence, Ellen DeGeneres Issues Apology and Warning After More Ex-Employees Speak Out on Harassment and Abuse

Ellen DeGeneres issued an apology to her staff after dozens of ex-employees told BuzzFeed News that sexual harassment and misconduct by executive producers on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” was common.

BuzzFeed News also reported on July 16 that current and former employees said there was racism, fear, and intimidation, some of which came from DeGeneres herself.

Sources told Variety on July 27 that a memo from show producer Telepictures and distributor Warner Bros. Television said they are working with a WBTV-owner WarnerMedia’s employee relations group and a third party firm to investigate the claims.

DeGeneres was silent for weeks until she suddenly released a statement on July 31, notes Variety:

On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’ would be a place of happiness — no one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect. Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case.

“Everybody Loves Raymond” actor Brad Garrett said on July 30 that DeGeneres herself treated people “horribly.”

DeGeneres went on to say that changes were going to be made now that she was aware of the problems:

As we’ve grown exponentially, I’ve not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I’d want them done. Clearly some didn’t. That will now change and I’m committed to ensuring this does not happen again.

Sources told Variety that executive producer Ed Glavin is leaving the show immediately, even though many of the sexual misconduct allegations were made against executive producer Kevin Leman.

DeGeneres went on to warn employees about speaking out:

I’m also learning that people who work with me and for me are speaking on my behalf and misrepresenting who I am and that has to stop. As someone who was judged and nearly lost everything for just being who I am, I truly understand and have deep compassion for those being looked at differently, or treated unfairly, not equal, or – worse – disregarded. To think that any one of you felt that way is awful to me.

(Sources: BuzzFeed News, Variety, BuzzFeed News, Brad Garrett/Twitter)

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