Ditch your Ellen DeGeneres tickets: How her staff is allegedly treated
Throughout our numerous articles on the fall from grace of one Ellen DeGeneres, we’ve made it pretty clear that her claims of “be kind” is pretty disingenuous. All celebrities are a little two-faced on some level, but Ellen herself seems to be pretty bad with the allegations and the facts at hand. The latest scandal of many Ellen scandals concerns staff mistreatment.
Since, without the crew, there would be no show, ditch your Ellen DeGeneres tickets because these stories will leave your head spinning. Big time. Here are some of the allegations of the toxic workplace environment that surrounds Ellen DeGeneres.
“Toxic Workplace Culture”
About a week ago at the time of this writing, Buzzfeed News interviewed former employees of the Ellen show. Oh, they had a lot to say about DeGeneres’ two-faced tendencies on the set of the series. One employee said of her “be kind” philosophy, “That ‘be kind’ bullshit only happens when the cameras are on. It’s all for show. I know they give money to people and help them out, but it’s for show.”
These anonymous employees spoke to Buzzfeed on the condition of anonymity for the article, fearing retribution from Ellen DeGeneres or other higher-ups interested in keeping her on the air. Which, you know, fair. We’ve heard about the time she tried to get that waitress fired because she had chipped nail polish.
But, oh, it just gets worse.
A brief list of offenses that will make you throw away Ellen DeGeneres tickets
While the staffers interviewed in the Buzzfeed article said that it came from the higher up producers and staff in terms of day to day toxicity. It’s still Ellen’s show, so she needs to set the environment. One employee said quite simply, “If she wants to have her own show and have her name on the show title, she needs to be more involved to see what’s going on.”
And, really, she should because the list of offenses are trouble to say the least. Employees fired from the series due to taking medical leave or bereavement days. Accusations of racism that led another to be walking off the job. And then, of course, the infamous “don’t look directly at Ellen or speak with” directions to the staff.
Seriously, the racism was quite real
The employee who walked off the series after a year and a half said that she experienced a lot of microaggressions due to being black. When she started to share her story, the only word you can really think is “yikes” because, seriously, no one should be treated like that.
According to Buzzfeed, she recalled “a senior-level producer told her and another Black employee, “Oh wow, you both have box braids; I hope we don’t get you confused.” And at a work party, she said, one of the main writers told her, “I’m sorry, I only know the names of the white people who work here,” and other coworkers “awkwardly laughed it off” instead of coming to her defense.”
She fought back against this sort of racism as well, but when she spoke out against the discrimination. Her coworkers distanced themselves from her and her white male boss would bring up his “Black friend” to show her “understood the struggle”.
Eventually, she was brought to executive producer Ed Glavin, who berated her for such horrible things like saying that they should receive diversity and inclusion training. After that meeting, she left and no one should blame her.
She added that with the resurgence in the Black Lives Matter movement, she’s speaking out, “We all feel this. We’ve been feeling this way, but I’ve been too afraid to say anything because everyone knows what happens when you say something as a Black person. You’re blacklisted.”
Other horrible stories
Sorry, racism isn’t even the tip of the iceberg. One employee shares how they were fired after checking into a mental health facility for a suicide attempt. They said, “Some of the producers talk openly in public about addiction and mental health awareness, but they’re the reason there’s a stigma. They definitely don’t practice what they preach with the ‘be kind’ mantra.”
Another employee recalled how they had to battle with supervisors and HR during an unexpectedly difficult year that included medical leave for a car accident and bereavement leave for two funerals of family members. After that, they were fired from the series.
They said, “That’s the definition of a toxic work environment, where they make you feel like you’re going insane and then you’re like, no, everything I was feeling was right. It was all leading up to this.”
Many are pleased that the toxic environment is being brought to light
Shortly after the article was released, US Weekly talked with a source “close to the show” and said that the staff were pleased that the allegations were being taken seriously. The source said, “They’ve been calling and texting each other about the story. They’re loving that the truth—which has been an open secret for years in the industry—is finally receiving more interest.”
Executive producers and, reportedly, those at the heart of the allegations did release a statement about the Buzzfeed News story. Though, given what we heard, it seems like more empty words to keep people buying Ellen DeGeneres tickets than anything else.
“We are truly heartbroken and sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience. 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 realize, as many in the world are learning, that we need to do better, are committed to do better, and we will do better.”