As CBS Decides Les Moonves’ Fate, Women Demand ‘No Reward’ For Alleged Misconduct
As CBS reportedly finalizes Les Moonves’ departure as the network’s chairman and CEO amid mounting sexual misconduct allegations, women and their allies are demanding he hit the road sans payout.
Activists railed against any potential exit compensation for Moonves on Sunday shortly after The New Yorker published its second report describing sexual harassment and assault allegations against the longtime media mogul. Since August, at least 12 women have publicly accused Moonves of sexual misconduct.
Time’s Up, an organization aimed at combating sexual harassment and inequality in the workplace, released a statement Sunday urging “full transparency” from CBS on the findings of an independent investigation commissioned by the board.
CBS, as you sit in a room debating next steps to rectify the damage done, remember that the world is watching.Time’s Up
“Six more women have made bone-chilling allegations of abuse, harassment and retaliation against Les Moonves,” according to the Time’s Up statement. “We believe them. These new allegations are in addition to the previous six women who have already bravely spoken out and detailed horrific behavior from Moonves.”
“CBS, as you sit in a room debating next steps to rectify the damage done, remember that the world is watching,” the statement continued. “We will accept nothing less than full transparency of the investigation’s findings, a commitment to real change across all levels of CBS management and no reward for Les Moonves.”
[email protected], as you sit in a room debating next steps to rectify the damage done, remember that the world is watching. We will accept nothing less than full transparency of the investigation’s findings, a commitment to real change across all levels of CBS management & no reward for Les https://t.co/AhrtIcYIni
— TIME'S UP (@TIMESUPNOW) September 9, 2018
We know that decisions are being made today. Do not award an alleged predator with ANYTHING, let alone more money than the average woman will make over the course of 50 lifetimes. https://t.co/rrE4NeRDCt
— TIME'S UP (@TIMESUPNOW) September 9, 2018
CNBC reported in early September that the CBS board would offer Moonves a roughly $100 million exit package consisting nearly entirely of CBS stock. If the investigation proved the allegations true, then the CBS board wants the right to take back some of that money, according to CNBC.
CBS announced Sunday that Moonves was stepping own. The network will donate $20 million to the Me Too movement that will be deducted from any severance benefits Moonves may be owed. The donation to charities promoting women’s equality in the workplace will come upon the conclusion of an independent investigation into the allegations, according to the statement.
Moonves will receive $120 million if an internal CBS investigation into the allegations fails to provide grounds for his dismissal, the company announced Monday. He could end up with nothing pending the internal investigation, according to Reuters.
Rachel Bloom, who stars in the TV show “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” on The CW, which is owned by CBS and Warner Bros., joined the chorus of women calling on CBS to withhold any exit payout.
“As an employee of CBS, I would just like to say that Les Moonves should be fired without getting a fucking dollar,” Bloom tweeted Sunday. “The actions described in this article are those of sexual assault and shame on anyone else in the corporation who knew about his crimes.”
As an employee of CBS, I would just like to say that Les Moonves should be fired without getting a fucking dollar. The actions described in this article are those of sexual assault and shame on anyone else in the corporation who knew about his crimes. https://t.co/1ItYyeLGmH
— Rachel Bloom (@Racheldoesstuff) September 9, 2018
Thank you Rachel Bloom for speaking out. A lot of people I know won't speak/tweet about Les for fear that if he survives, they'll never work at CBS again. Not that I blame them. The only reason I feel able to speak is because I don't write the kind of stuff CBS generally buys. https://t.co/YAEBXTklIr
— Sarah Watson (@SarahWatson42) September 9, 2018
Moonves has vehemently denied any wrongdoing. In response to allegations described in the New Yorker report Sunday, Moonves said he “never used my position to hinder the advancement or careers of women.”
“The appalling accusations in this article are untrue,” Moonves’ statement said. “What is true is that I had consensual relations with three of the women some 25 years ago before I came to CBS.” He did not specify which three encounters he considered consensual, according to The New Yorker.
“I can only surmise they are surfacing now for the first time, decades later, as part of a concerted effort by others to destroy my name, my reputation, and my career,” Mooves continued.
CBS did not immediately return HuffPost’s request for comment.
This article has been updated to include CBS’ statement on Monday.
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Sexual HarassmentSexual MisconductCbsT Imes UpLes Moonves