Bethenny Frankel applauded NBCUniversal’s new and improved workplace guidelines after they were released Friday declaring, “the reality reckoning is here” and tagging her former employer Bravo, a subsidiary of NBCU.
In an Instagram post, the former “Real Housewives of New York City” star, who has spearheaded the so-called “reality reckoning” movement calling for better pay and stronger conduct guidelines for unscripted television participants, applauded NBCU for addressing “obvious” issues.
“There are very few times in my career and life when I have been certain that I am on the right path, albeit a challenging one… but worth the fight for a cause,” Frankel wrote.
“To my former employers at NBC Universal and Frances Berwick, who I have always enjoyed, liked, admired and genuinely respected, Bravo to you,” she added. “You are a strong example to women, to executives and to other networks and streamers who have already begun to fall in line and make changes.”
Berwick, the chairman of NBCUniversal Entertainment, signed the letter that went out to production companies Friday outlining the strengthened standards around reality TV production, including alcohol monitoring, psychological support during and after production, and improved/more transparent communication between the production companies and NBCU.
Much of NBC’s reality TV programming, including its popular “Real Housewives” franchise, is outsourced to third-party production companies.
Fellow former “Real Housewives” star Nene Leakes praised Frankel’s efforts, commenting, “Your voice was heard! Bravo to you.”
However, Frankel vowed that the fight wasn’t over, particularly when it comes to residuals.
Responding to former “Project Runway” contestant Kenley Collins, who responded that she “continues to see or hear nothing” from NBCU despite the design show streaming on Peacock and its rights being sold to other streamers, Frankel wrote, “This isn’t OVER.”
Frankel was an original cast member of “The Real Housewives of New York City” before leaving the series and returning for a second stint. She permanently exited the show after Season 11 (2019).
Back in July, spurred by Frankel’s call to action, attorneys Bryan Freedman and Mark Geragos sent a letter to NBCU’s general counsel warning the company to hold onto any relevant records “until further notice” about misconduct on reality TV as potential legal action loomed.
Following the release of the new guidelines, Geragos’ office issued the following statement to TheWrap: “We welcome any changes going forward but these are just a fraction of what needs to be done and frankly, we will mandate sweeping change.”
NBCUniversal declined to comment for this story.
See Frankel’s response to the updated conduct guidelines below: