Former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson has called on the network to release ex-employees from any non-disclosure agreements that were made with the network.
“All women at Fox News and beyond forced to sign NDAs should be released from them immediately, giving them back the voices they deserve,” Carlson told Vanity Fair in a piece published on Monday. “None of us asked to get into a workplace dispute. We simply had the courage to stand up and say something — but in the end it’s our voices no one can hear. Because of our NDAs, we can never say what is factually correct or incorrect about what happened to us at Fox.”
The appeal — Carlson is joined by former contributors and staffers like Julie Roginsky, Tamara Holder and Diana Falzone — also comes shortly after NBCUniversal announced via MSNBC host Rachel Maddow that it would release former employees who wanted to speak out about sexual harassment or misconduct from their NDAs. The network has been facing public scrutiny stemming from reporting in Ronan Farrow’s book, “Catch and Kill.” Carlson, alongside former Fox News hosts like Megyn Kelly and Greta Van Susteren, had also written a letter to Comcast CEO Brian Roberts earlier this month, calling on the parent company to launch an “independent investigation of sexual misconduct and coverups at NBC News.” (NBC News has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.)
Carlson, who was once a co-host on “Fox & Friends,” was the first woman to publicly accuse Fox News chairman Roger Ailes of sexual harassment. Her widely publicized story has since been made into the feature film “Bombshell,” which opens in theaters in December, and included in Showtime’s “The Loudest Voice” miniseries. But due to her NDA that she signed on to as part of her settlement with Fox News, the former on-air host has not been allowed to participate in either project.
“Because of our NDAs, movies and television projects are being produced, but the women muzzled can’t comment on them,” Carlson told Vanity Fair. “Because of our NDAs, others can continue to spread mistruths and deny our claims, knowing full well we can’t say a thing.”
A representative for Fox News did not respond to a request for comment.