Former Fox newscaster Gretchen Carlson today renewed her call for Fox to lift its non-disclosure agreements for employees.
Carlson voiced her complaints in an editorial in The New York Times. It arrives as the film Bombshell hits theaters tomorrow, dramatizing the efforts of women (including Carlson) to expose former CEO Roger Ailes for sexual harassment. The Jay Roach film stars Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Margot Robbie and John Lithgow.
“When I sued, I could have never known that my story and the stories of other women at Fox would turn into both a television mini-series and a film, and, more important, that I would be prohibited from speaking about these projects,” said Carlson in her Times editorial.
She noted that she initially felt like she won a victory by retaining the right to speak about harassment in general. “But had I known my complaint would help ignite such a profound cultural shift and that I would be depicted onscreen, I would have also fought against signing the non-disclosure agreement, or NDA, that prevented me from discussing my experiences while working at Fox News.”
She further contended that not being able to speak about her specific experiences means she’s “forced into silence.” NDAs “foster a culture that gives predators cover to commit the same crimes again.”.
Carlson issued her first call on the NDAs back in October, joining several former Fox News staffers who publicly asked for the same release from non-disclosure agreements that NBCUniversal granted its staffers regarding sexual harassment settlements.
She later formed an organization with Julie Roginsky and Diana Falzone, each of whom sued Fox News Channel and/or Roger Ailes with accusations of sexual harassment, retaliation or discrimination, to end the mandatory use of non-disclosure agreements. Lift Our Voices seeks to end NDAs, confidentiality provisions and forced arbitration clauses that the group claims have prevented employees from publicly discussing and disclosing toxic workplace conditions, including sexual harassment and assault.