'Ellen Degeneres Show' under internal investigation over toxic, racist claims
American comedian Ellen Degeneres' talk show will now face an internal investigation after allegations of a toxic and racist workplace surfaced. As part of the probe, current and former employees of The Ellen Show will be interviewed about their experiences on the set of the show. The probe comes after reports alleging racism and intimidation on the show. Here are more details.
WarnerMedia's employee relations group, third-party firm to lead probe
According to Variety, the executives from the show producer Telepictures and distributor Warner Bros. Television sent a memo to staffers last week. The memo mentioned that they have engaged WBTV-owner WarnerMedia's employee relations group and a third-party firm, whose name was not mentioned, to interview current and former employees about their experiences on the set of The Ellen Show.
Employees reported toxic workplace; allegedly fired for taking medical leave
In mid-July, a report in BuzzFeed News detailed how The Ellen Show's "be kind" mantra only happens on camera. Employees reported a toxic work environment where they faced discrimination or were fired over taking medical leave or bereavement days for family funerals. One employee who returned after a month's medical leave following a suicide attempt was let go a week after they returned to work.
Black woman reported facing 'microaggressions' on the show
A Black woman who worked on the show for a year and a half reported facing "microaggressions" during her tenure. She said she was reprimanded for addressing issues at the workplace and asking for a raise at a meeting with executive producer Ed Glavin.
Here's how the show's executive producers responded
In a joint statement, executive producers Ed Glavin, Mary Connelly, and Andy Lassner said they have strived to create an open, safe, and inclusive workplace. They said they're "heartbroken and sorry" hearing that even one employee has had a negative experience. They added, "It's not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us."