Ellen DeGeneres, who returned to her daytime talk show on Monday, addressed reports that her show had fostered a “toxic” work culture. After joking that she had had a “great…super terrific” summer, she discussed the accusations of harassment, which were investigated by WarnerMedia.
“I learned that things happened here that never should have happened,” DeGeneres said. “I take that very seriously and I want to say I’m so sorry to the people that were affected. I know that I’m in a position of privilege and power, and I realize that with that comes responsibility. I take responsibility for what happens at my show.”
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The comedian said that the new season marks the beginning of a “new chapter” and dismissed claims that she was a different person behind the scenes. DeGeneres, who is known for promoting kindness, came under fire for allegedly ignoring the mistreatment of her staff by senior producers.
“All I want is for every single one of [my 270 employees] to be happy and to be proud to work here,” she said before announcing that her DJ, Stephen “tWitch” Boss, had been promoted to co-executive producer.
After reports of racism, sexual harassment and misconduct were revealed in July, WarnerMedia terminated executive producer Ed Glavin, head writer and executive producer Kevin Leman and co-executive producer Jonathan Norman. DeGeneres has not addressed any of these claims directly.
The show has decided to make some changes and will provide staffer members with five days off and personal days for birthdays, doctors’ appointments and family events, all of which will be paid. In a Zoom call in August, DeGeneres told employees, “I feel like I’ve kind of let the ball drop a bit because I’m focused on the show, I go in and I do the show, and I’ve just let everybody to do their jobs – to run different departments. And it just became a well-oiled machine, and I think that is the problem.”
Source: Hollywood Reporter
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