Ellen DeGeneres Gets Bad News As Former Staffers Say Her Workplace Is Full Of ‘Racism, Fear And Intimidation’
Ellen DeGeneres has just been hit with more bad news as former employees on her daytime talk show are saying that her workplace environment is full of “racism, fear and intimidation.”
Ten people who previously worked on the show as well as one current staffer spoke to BuzzFeed News anonymously to recount various incidents that included being fired for attending two family funerals and producers joking that two black employees looked so similar that people might get confused.
One ex-staffer claimed that she was told by a show writer that they “only know the names of the white people who work here.” Another former employee alleged that they were told to take down a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for medical costs not covered by the show’s health insurance because it reflected poorly on “Ellen’s brand.”
The former employees all agreed that the show’s environment is “dominated by fear,” with employees being rewarded for not speaking up about various concerns over work hours and microaggressions.
“They feel that everybody who works at The Ellen Show is lucky to work there — ‘So if you have a problem, you should leave because we’ll hire someone else because everybody wants to work here,'” one former staffer said.
One of the ex-staffers called on DeGeneres to “take more responsibility” on the show’s set.
“If she wants to have her own show and have her name on the show title, she needs to be more involved to see what’s going on,” the former employee said.
“I think the executive producers surround her and tell her, ‘Things are going great, everybody’s happy,’ and she just believes that, but it’s her responsibility to go beyond that.”
The show’s executive producers Ed Glavin, Mary Connelly and Andy Lassner responded to the Buzzfeed story with the following statement:
“Over the course of nearly two decades, 3,000 episodes, and employing over 1000 staff members, we have strived to create an open, safe, and inclusive work environment. We are truly heartbroken and sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience. It’s not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us.”
“For the record, the day to day responsibility of the Ellen show is completely on us. We take all of this very seriously and we realise, as many in the world are learning, that we need to do better, are committed to do better, and we will do better.”
DeGeneres has found herself embroiled in controversy after controversy over the past few months, with various people coming forward to claim that she isn’t as nice behind the scenes as her public persona makes her appear to be.
Her staffers also claimed that they were left in the dark for weeks about their payment and status of employment after the show went on hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.