$68 million spent to settle sexual harassment, discrimination claims in Fox News

Former Fox News chairman Roger Ailes walking with his wife Elizabeth Tilson as they leave the News Corp building in New York, on July 18, 2016.
Former Fox News chairman Roger Ailes walking with his wife Elizabeth Tilson as they leave the News Corp building in New York, on July 18, 2016.PHOTO: AFP/GETTY IMAGES

LOS ANGELES (NYT) - Twenty-First Century Fox said on Monday it had incurred about US$50 million (S$68 million) in costs during the year that ended on June 30, tied to the settlement of sexual harassment and discrimination allegations in its Fox News division.

That figure does not include the payouts made to the men ousted amid the scandal.

Mr Roger Ailes, the network's founding chairman, received a US$40 million package when he left, and Bill O'Reilly, the former top-rated host, received about US$25 million.

In a filing, the company said it had US$224 million in costs during the fiscal year related to "management and employee transitions and restructuring" at several of its business units, including the cable network group that houses Fox News.

The company has spent the past year trying to clean up the sexual harassment and discrimination scandal that has engulfed its Fox News division.

Since former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson filed suit last July against Mr Ailes, the company has overhauled its management team, hired a new head of human resources, urged employees to report inappropriate behaviour and conducted training sessions.

 
 

The company continues to face harassment and discrimination suits, including a class-action racial discrimination suit. Recently, Fox News suspended longtime host Eric Bolling pending an investigation into reports that he sent inappropriate text messages to female colleagues.