Most victims of sexual assault within their company gain condolences and support from their coworkers, but that wasn’t the case for one former employee at Fox News.
Andrea Tantaros, a former Fox News host, filed a lawsuit against former CEO Roger Ailes and other top executives at the company who punished her for complaining about sexual harassment by Ailes,The New York Times reported.
The former Fox News host claims Ailes discussed how she looked in a bikini, made sexual comments towards her and speculated the sexual habits of other employees at the company, according to New York Magazine.
In the past, Ailes also reportedly asked Tantaros to turn around “so I can get a good look at you,” the lawsuit claims.
"Fox News masquerades as a defender of traditional family values, but behind the scenes, it operates like a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency and misogyny," Tantaros' lawsuit says.
Tantaros told top executives at Fox News on multiple occasions about Ailes and in response, the co-president of the company, Bill Shine, told her that Ailes was a "very powerful man" and that she "needed to let this one go," the allegations claim.
The former employee said that the moment management at Fox News were aware of her complaints, she was taken off the air.
Yet Shine said Tantaros never complained about Ailes’ behavior to him. And General Counsel Dianne Brandi wrote in a letter to Tantaros’ lawyer that the ex-host was suspended with pay for failing to inform Fox News before publishing her book, USA TODAY reported.
Earlier this year, an unnamed chief lawyer for Fox stated that Tantaros made up claims of sexual harassment to gain power in her employee contract dispute.
Judd Burstein, her lawyer, said that Fox News offered her a large sum of money if she denied claims of sexual harassment from Ailes and others in the company.
“Ailes did not act alone,” the lawsuit states. “He may have been the primary culprit, but his actions were condoned by his most senior lieutenants, who engaged in a concerted effort to silence Tantaros by threats, humiliation and retaliation.”
The lawsuit lists several men at Fox News in addition to Ailes who made sexual advances or comments towards Tantaros including Bill O’Reilly, John Roberts, Ben Collins and actor, Dean Cain, according to BuzzFeed.
This latest sexual harassment case against Ailes, along with the many others, shows how misogyny is condoned at Fox News.
Banner Image Credit: Reuters