Staffers at the president’s favorite news organization are up in arms over recent changes at the company intended to create a more tolerant workplace, according to a report from Vanity Fair.
On Thursday, it was announced that Suzanne Scott, former programming executive, was being promoted to CEO in the wake of Roger Ailes’s disgraced departure—not a step forward for progress or a step backwards really, just something that needed to happen in order to continue to run their disgraceful business. Scott’s hiring comes a few days after the announcement that Fox had settled the rest of the gender and racial discrimination lawsuits that the Ailes era left in its wake, to the tune of $10 million.
Those quick to applaud the conservative juggernaut for this daring act of feminism should take into consideration the fact that Scott was the executive who enforced the miniskirt rule handed down by Ailes, which ensured that women on camera adhere to a “skimpy” dress code. She’s also named in the suits filed by former Fox News contributors Julie Roginsky and Andrea Tantaros as one of the executives who either covered up or ignored repeated sexual harassment claims at the network for years. She denied all claims. In short, she is widely seen as an Ailes ally, but she will now be tasked with enforcing a new set of guidelines intended to make Fox News a more progressive, inclusive place to work.
From Vanity Fair:
According to sources, Fox News recently installed a “meditation room” complete with Muslim prayer rugs in Ollie North’s office in the network’s Washington bureau. (Earlier this month, North left Fox to become the president of the National Rifle Association.) Staffers now attend mandatory sexual harassment training, and the employee intranet includes a section for gender-transition policies and guidelines. “People are terrified. They kicked Ollie North out and put in a prayer room. We’ve got a new trans policy. You’re not allowed to be transphobic,” one source said. Other changes that would have been alien in the Ailes era include the creation of a workforce and diversity council. “People’s heads are blowing up,” one insider said.
Ah yes, a woman’s touch—or the panicked moves of a corporation scrambling to catch up with the times, terrified of losing their power.
Update (2:49 p.m.): In an email to Jezebel, a Fox News spokesperson directed us to an article from the Daily Beast, pointing out that “Scott has been integral in a number of women’s initiatives at the channel including Mentoring programs, Women’s Breakfasts, and other internal Women’s Events.”