ABC News Exec Barbara Fedida Fired For Racist Remarks Against Sunny Hostin & Robin Roberts
Barbara Fedida has been fired following an internal investigation that began in June into confidential, racist, and inappropriate statements towards black journalists, allegedly coming from the ABC News exec. As previously reported, Barbara Fedida allegedly called Sunny Hostin ‘low rent’ & referenced ‘picking cotton’ in a statement against Robin Roberts. When the news broke she was immediately placed on leave.
It is now being reported that Barbara Fedida did say some of the ‘racially insensitive’ remarks she was accused of. Peter Rice, chairman of ABC News parent Walt Disney Television said in a statement on Monday (July 21st,)
‘The investigation substantiated that Ms. Fedida did make some of the unacceptable racially insensitive comments attributed to her.
‘It also substantiated that Ms. Fedida managed in a rough manner and, on occasion, used crass and inappropriate language.
‘Lastly, the investigation found no basis for the claims that Ms. Fedida was the subject of dozens of HR complaints and that ABC News spent millions of dollars in confidential settlements related to Ms. Fedida, as alleged in some press accounts.’
‘Although Ms. Fedida made contributions to the organization over the 20-year span of her career, in light of the overall findings, we have determined that she can no longer serve in a leadership role and will not be returning to ABC News.’
ABC News reportedly conducted 34 interviews, which all alleged that Barbra Fedida has made inappropriate comments to employees on topics ranging from mass shootings to foul language to female employees. One employee added,
‘To say that she’s an abusive figure is an understatement,’
Barbara Fedida has denied all allegations against her, stating that she has never engaged in abusive or inappropriate behavior during her career at the network.
‘Throughout my career, I have been a champion for increased diversity in network news. Building a news 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.’
One of her many alleged racist comments included 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 still has not commented on the allegations, but was reportedly furious over the claims, according to reporter Yashar Ali, who initially 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 initially 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 were 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.”
Watch ‘The View’ co-hosts discuss the allegations below:
What are your thoughts on Barbara Fedida being fired from the network? Let us know in the comments!