ESPN’s den of sexual harassment

By Nick Givas, DCNF

The Boston Globe published a scathing piece about the “locker room culture” at ESPN, and claims there have been numerous cases of sexism and sexual misconduct throughout the company.

Jouranlist Jemele Hill (L) and Michael Smith provide commentary during the celebrity basketball game presented by Sprite during the 2016 BET Experience. Photo by Jesse Grant/BET/Getty Images for BET

Reporter Jenn Abelson wrote an article for The Globe, and spoke to about two dozen current and former staffers, Business Insider Reports.

The staffers told Abelson about inappropriate touching and sexual advances from male coworkers, some of whom had been associated with the network for years, according to Business Insider. “It’s like cutting your arm in an ocean full of sharks,” said a current ESPN employee. “The second new blood is in the water, they start circling.”

Abelson also claimed female anchor Sara Walsh was so afraid of losing her job that she chose to go on air while she was having a miscarriage, instead of calling in sick, when she began bleeding. Walsh didn’t provide The Globe with comment because she is still under contract with ESPN, according to Business Insider.

ESPN released a statement in response to the article praising its own “respectful and inclusive culture,” and patting itself on the back for providing advancement opportunities for women. Katina Arnold, an ESPN Spokeswoman, stated:

We work hard to maintain a respectful and inclusive culture at ESPN. It is always a work in progress, but we’re proud of the significant progress we’ve made in developing and placing women in key roles at the company in the board room, in leadership positions throughout ESPN and on air.

 

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