'60 Minutes' Exec Jeff Fager to Leave Amid Harassment Claim

13 September, 2018, 16:06 | Author: Irvin Gilbert
  • Story alleges a darker side of'60 Minutes

Embattled former "60 Minutes" head Jeff Fager was sacked for sending a harshly worded text to the CBS News reporter who is covering the sexual harassment scandals that have rocked CBS in recent weeks.

Just two days after the network announced that CEO Leslie Moonves was stepping down amid a series of #MeToo accusations, CBS News President David Rhodes revealed in a memo to network staff Wednesday that Fager had been fired.

In the first New Yorker report, former colleagues also accused Mr Fager of inappropriate touching, and of protecting men accused of sexual misconduct.

The New Yorker this summer reported allegations that Fager, who had been at CBS News for more than three decades, touched employees inappropriately and enabled a culture of bad behavior inside the organization.

It was shortly after outlets began to pick up the news of Fager's exit that he released a statement of his own, in light of CBS News' refusing to comment on his specific violation.

"60 Minutes" executive producer Jeff Fager. He acknowledged that his language in the text was "harsh", but said that "although journalists received harsh demands for fairness all the time, CBS didn't like it". Fager, who was named in reports about tolerating an abusive workplace at CBS, stepped down today.

The investigation into Fager by an outside law firm is not complete. The allegations of misconduct will continue to be investigated independently, however. "One such note should not result in termination after 36 years, but it did", Fager said.

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Rhodes said Fager violated company policy but did not specify the policy.

"There are people who lost their jobs trying to harm me and if you pass on these damaging claims without your own reporting to back them up that will become a serious problem", Fager wrote, according to Duncan.

After the text was shared on air, others at CBS also said they interpreted it as a threat. The latest allegation against Fager comes from Sarah Johansen, a former CBS intern, who told Farrow that the "60 Minutes" executive producer groped her at a work party. Rose had been a co-anchor since 2012 on "CBS This Morning" and a contributing correspondent on "60 Minutes".

A representative for Fager said he had no further comment on Wednesday night.

Jeff Fager is leaving the company effective immediately.

Sources at CBS News said there was a consensus that the network couldn't take action in the Fager case until the Moonves case was settled. "60 Minutes" is one of the most revered programs in television news.

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