Ellen DeGeneres has broken her silence to address recent allegations that her show is a “toxic” workplace.
The popular chat show host revealed she was “disappointed” to learn of the accusations, in a candid letter to her staff.
“On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that The Ellen DeGeneres Show would be a place of happiness,” she wrote in a letter obtained by E! News.
“No one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect. Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case.”
“For that, I am sorry. Anyone who knows me knows it’s the opposite of what I believe and what I hoped for our show.”
Ellen acknowledged that her success would not have been possible “without all of your contributions”, adding: “My name is on the show and everything we do and I take responsibility for that.”
“As we’ve grown exponentially, I’ve not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I’d want them done. Clearly some didn’t.”
“That will now change and I’m committed to ensuring this does not happen again,” she promised.
“As someone who was judged and nearly lost everything for just being who I am, I truly understand and have deep compassion for those being looked at differently, or treated unfairly, not equal, or worse – disregarded,” she continued.
“To think that any one of you felt that way is awful to me,” she wrote, adding that she’s grateful people felt “safe” enough to come forward with their experiences.
“Again, I’m so sorry to anyone who didn’t have that experience. If not for COVID, I’d have done this in person, and I can’t wait to be back on our stage and see you all then.”
The show’s executive producers Ed Glavin, Mary Connelly and Andy Lassner previously told E! News that they’re taking the claims “very seriously”.
“We are truly heartbroken and sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience,” they said in a statement.
“It’s not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us.”
“For the record, the day to day responsibility of the Ellen show is completely on us. We take all of this very seriously and we realise, as many in the world are learning, that we need to do better, are committed to do better, and we will do better,” they added.
Ellen released a statement after BuzzFeed News published accounts from current and former staff members, who alleged they were subjected to a “toxic work environment” while working on the show.
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