Charlie Rose will be paying out more that $207,900 to interns who worked on his PBS show to settle a class action suit. The settlement, reported by The New York Times, was reached this week and will see Rose and his production company Charlie Rose Inc paying $1,100 each to a class of about 189 interns. This stems from an initial class action suit filed in the New York State Supreme Court by former Rose intern Lucy Bickerton on March 1. In that filing Bickerton, who interned on the Rose Show in 2007, said that despite New York law requiring unpaid internships to only be allowed in an educational context, the Charlie Rose Show “did not provide academic or vocational training.” From Bickerton’s descriptions, the interns essentially performed the duties of research assistants and production assistants, working up to 25 hours a week. The suit sought to get minimum wage for all of the Rose Show interns ”in an amount that cannot currently be ascertained but that readily exceeds $150,000.”
The settlement comes on a landscape that sees various other former entertainment industry interns seeking pay or recognition through the courts for the work they have performed. Another class action case involving former Fox Searchlight interns is currently winding its way through the courts.