PBS Pulls Tavis Smiley's Talk Show After Misconduct Allegations

PBS Pulls Tavis Smiley's Talk Show After Misconduct Allegations

PBS Pulls Tavis Smiley's Talk Show After Misconduct Allegations

Another powerful man in media has been suspended due to sexual misconduct allegations-this time, it's Public Broadcasting Service host Tavis Smiley.

The network said it had indefinitely suspended its distribution of the show after the inquiry uncovered allegations that were "inconsistent with the values and standards of PBS".

Sources told Variety that the investigation found credible allegations that "Smiley had engaged in sexual relationships with multiple subordinates". "This investigation included interviews with witnesses as well as with Mr. Smiley".

According to the information shared to Variety, PBS hired a lawyer named Sarah Taylor Wirtz, from the firm MSK, to look into Smiley's history after hearing allegations of misconduct from staffers.

Some witnesses said they were concerned that employment status was linked to whether they had sex with Smiley. Additionally, Variety reports, witnesses said that Smiley had created "a verbally abusive and threatening environment" for his employees.

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A representative for PBS declined to specify the nature of the allegations against Smiley. I learned of the investigation when former staffers started contacting me to share the uncomfortable experience of receiving a phone call from a stranger asking whether, I had ever done anything to make them uncomfortable, and if they could provide other names of persons to call.

"Tavis' misogyny is always creeping around, barely camouflaged by Midwestern good manners in line with the most duplicitous guys who always open doors, buy flowers and carry luggage until their girlfriends end up scrambling for some hotline 800 number", wrote Hyzagi, who then relays that Smiley gave him an order to not say anything about his new friend to anyone at work. To be clear, I have never groped, coerced, or exposed myself inappropriately to any workplace colleague in my entire broadcast career, covering 6 networks over 30 years. Smiley is not employed by PBS.

The ouster comes weeks after PBS cut ties with anchor and talk show host Charlie Rose, citing "extremely disturbing and intolerable behaviour" by him toward women at his PBS talk show.

Smiley's career includes a stint hosting a TV show on Black Entertainment Television in the 90s as well as a commentator at National Public Radio, ABC News, and CNN.

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