Seven West Media boss Tim Worner is back in the spotlight after extending an invitation to the Media Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA) and veteran broadcaster Tracey Spicer to meet with him to discuss the company’s work culture.
Worner has invited both parties to meet with him as an opportunity to address concerns they have about Seven’s workplace culture, after they criticised the TV network over its handling of a workplace investigation and sexual harassment claim involving former employee Amy Taeuber, according to The Australian.
The 7.30 report revealed leaked audio taped by Taeuber of her sacking, in which you can hear Seven’s HR manager telling Taeuber she was suspended and under investigation, and denying her the chance to have a support person in the room.
Seven subsequently denied the allegations made and countered claims made by 7.30 that it refused to offer its side of the story.
Meanwhile, Spicer said she was “appalled” at the treatment of the cadet journalist by Seven, but she continues to hear from women working in the industry that sexual harassment is still part of the territory, and companies are doing little to support women when they come forward.
“We all expect that these kinds of attitudes and reactions from media companies to allegations of sexual harassment have been left in the bad old days of the 1980s and ‘90s,” she said.
“But our Women in Media research shows that simply isn’t the case. Professional women face sexual harassment and discrimination in their workplaces every day, and it is time media executives take direct ownership of the stamping out of this toxic culture that allows harassment to continue and that ensures senior, predominantly male perpetrators continue to be protected.
“It has to end, now. This destroys the lives and livelihoods of hard-working women doing great work and it has to end now.”