Ever since the initial Harvey Weinstein scandal, it seems that new big wigs in every and any industry are getting exposed every day. From actors and directors to CEOs of massive companies, though if there is one company you probably thought wouldn't be hosting culprits, it's the Canadian founded brand Vice.
This past weekend the New York Times published a shocking exposé about the company that prides itself on being a youth media outlet dedicated to delivering cutting-edge news on varying topics. Yet according to dozens of employee complaints, it seems that the current and liberal seeming company has been hiding an underbelly of old school harassment in the workplace.
As of now three settlements between Vice Media and former employees have been unveiled. The most recent allegation implicates Vice Media's own President, Andrew Creighton, where a former employee was allotted $135,000 due to being fired after rejecting a romantic relationship with Creighton. Earlier in the year, former employee, Martina Veltroni was offered an unknown amount as settlement due to her allegations that her supervisor retaliated against her after they had engaged in a brief intimate relationship.
At Vice's London office, former employee, Joanna Fuertes-Knight, received a $24,000 settlement in response to allegations that she was sexually harassed and discriminated because of her gender and race. One of the perpetrators of this harassment was a Vice producer named Rhys James who went as far as to ask what colour her nipples were and if she slept with black men.
What's even more haunting about the situation plaguing Vice Media's workplace is the fact that the allegations concern male employees ranging in age from their 20s to their 40s. An age bracket where you'd think they would know better and do better. However it just shows that not only does harassment and mistreatment of women in the workplace still happen, but that a new generation is continuing "old school" practices.
Since the New York Times' article went live on the 23rd, a reporter by the name of Robyn Kanner opened her direct messages on Twitter to any current or former employees at Vice who wanted to anonymously share their stories. The results showing that while a few settlements have been released to the media, there is a lot more to the story that is left to come out:
“I worked at vice and an exec said that if he had the chance he’d "totally fuck" a certain employee and encouraged my coworker to pursue her”
“Male hires were offered higher salaries for the same work I was doing. I raised the issue and was suddenly accused of having an "attitude." When I was receiving demeaning emails from my supervisor I asked for it to stop. I was promptly fired. It was retaliation for speaking up.”
“There's a staffer nicknamed the "P*ss Man" and I think that pretty much says it all. Morale is a joke. Employees are spending more time on resumes than on stories, and I don't blame them.”
"I was an intern at vice and got repeatedly groped by a dude who is still there & works with tons of prominent twitter people. He told me it was the only way to do anything other than transcribing."
"After I had just started doing on camera work for Vice, I would receive emails from a high level executive at the company in the middle of the night, telling me he liked the sound of my voice."
Source: New York Times