ABC News Exec Barbara Fedida Allegedly Called Sunny Hostin ‘Low Rent’ & Referenced ‘Picking Cotton’ In Statement Against Robin Roberts, Placed On Leave

Sunny Hostin, Robin Roberts, Barbara Fedida

ABC News Exec Barbara Fedida Allegedly Called Sunny Hostin ‘Low Rent’ & Referenced ‘Picking Cotton’ In Statement Against Robin Roberts, Placed On Leave

A private investigation is underway after New York Magazine/HuffPost released 6-month research into confidential, racist, and inappropriate statements allegedly coming from, ABC News head of talent Barbara Fedida.

One of her many alleged racist comments includes one made in reference to “Good Morning America” anchor Robin Roberts request for a larger salary.  The report says,

Roberts, a Black woman who has co-anchored “Good Morning America” since 2005, wanted more money as part of a contract renewal, and Fedida felt that Roberts had gotten enough. Fedida then asked what more Roberts could want and said it wasn’t as if the network was asking Roberts to “pick cotton,” according to one source who was in the room and witnessed the exchange. Two other sources who were not present but were told about the incident soon afterward confirmed the account to HuffPost.”

Robin Roberts has not commented on the allegations, but is reportedly furious over the claims, according to reporter Yashar Ali, who released the report.

Another disturbing allegation was about ‘The View’ host Sunny Hostin.  The report claims Barbara Fedida referred to her as “low rent,” Sunny addressed the claims on ‘The View:’

 “It was a tough weekend for me, and I was really disappointed and sad and hurt when I heard about the racist comments that were made, allegedly, about me, my colleagues and my dear friends, because if true, to reference Robin Roberts, who is one of the most respected and beloved journalists in our country, as ‘picking cotton,’ to reference me, someone who has been very open about having grown up in public housing, as ‘low rent,’ to reference Kendis Gibson, who was my office mate at ABC and now is an MSNBC anchor, to say that he isn’t worth paying as much as ABC would pay for toilet paper, the fact that Mara Schiavocampo, who is a friend and former colleague at ABC, that she has a [non-disclosure agreement] in place and can’t talk about her experiences at ABC, tells me that systemic racism touches everything and everyone in our society, regardless of social stature. No one is immune.”

Whoopi Goldberg seemingly came to the defense of Barbara Fedida, saying that she knows her personally, and doesn’t think that she is a racist, but if the claims are true “she’s gone.”

“I know Barbara Fedida, and I don’t think she’s a racist, everything I know about her doesn’t say that she has this in her, but I will say that one of the things that everyone should always say and I say it all the time is let’s find out, because if it’s true, she’s gone…All you racists out there, we know you, we know you, and if you turn out to be in the walls of the building, we’re tearing the building down.”

Gabrielle Union who is currently fighting a diversity battle with media powerhouse NBC, recently filed a complaint against Simon Cowell, NBC Universal, saying NBC chief tried to intimidate her after claiming racism on AGT set.

Gabrielle Union

She dropped her views on comments made towards host Sunny Hostin on Twitter saying,

“Calling a Black woman, who talks often abt being raised in public housing, who went on to be a federal prosecutor, & then a beloved panelist on The View “low rent” is racist & elitist. Fact that none of these claims are new lets u know how much they value diversity & inclusion.”

Watch ‘The View’ co-hosts discuss the allegations below:

After the allegations, went viral, Barbara Fedida released a statement, stating diversity has always been a priority for her,

“Throughout my career, I have been a champion for increased diversity in network news.  Building a new division where everyone can thrive has been my life’s mission. I am proud of my decades of work of hiring, supporting and promoting talented journalists of color. And, unlike these heartbreaking and incredibly misleading claims about me, that track record is well-documented and undeniable.”

Barbara Fedida is currently on leave during the investigation on the claims.

What are your thoughts on claims against ABC News head of talent Barbara Fedida? Let us know in the comments!

Authored by: Demi Lobo