NBC tightens sexual harassment policies post Matt Lauer scandal
NBC has issued strict new anti-sexual harassment rules to employees — including that staffers must snitch on any misbehaving colleagues — in the wake of the firing of disgraced “Today” show ex-host Matt Lauer.
A source tells Page Six that NBC employees have been ordered to report any inappropriate relationships in the workplace — and if they fail to do so, they could be fired for covering up for colleagues.
Detailed rules also have been issued about conduct in the office, including how to socialize and even how to hug colleagues.
A source says, “Romantic relationships at work are not exactly unusual, but now NBC says it is taking a zero-tolerance approach. Staffers have been told that if they find out about any affairs, romances, inappropriate relationships or behavior in the office, they have to report it to human resources, their superior or the company anti-harassment phone line. Staffers are shocked that they are now expected to snitch on their friends.
“Plus, there’s been a series of ridiculous rules issued on other office conduct. One rule relates to hugging. If you wish to hug a colleague, you have to do a quick hug, then an immediate release, and step away to avoid body contact.
Also there’s strict rules about socializing, including [not] sharing taxis home and [not] taking vegans to steakhouses.”
NBC News reps didn’t immediately comment.
Earlier this month, NBC News said it would require employees to take anti-harassment training and conduct a “culture assessment” of the news division following Lauer’s firing.
Chairman of NBC News Andy Lack said in a staff memo that a review of the “inappropriate sexual conduct” charges that led to Lauer’s firing resulted in interviews with at least 40 other employees.
Lauer was canned in late November for “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace,” after a former intern at the news network reported that the $25 million-a-year anchor had made advances to her when they both worked at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.