Gabrielle Union has filed a complaint against the NBC producers of “America’s Got Talent” six months after her departure, reporting that she experienced harassment, discrimination, and retaliation while appearing as a judge on the show.
The L.A.’s Finest actress filed the complaint with California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing, naming Simon Cowell and Cowell’s company as two out of the five respondents.
Allegations in the complaint include: racists jokes and comments on set, racist performance, and a producer saying that Union’s hair was “too wild” and needed to be “toned down.”
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“Gabrielle Union informed NBC of racially offensive conduct during the taping of America’s Got Talent, NBC did not ‘stand’ with her in ‘outrage at acts of racism.’ Instead, NBC did not care enough to either promptly investigate Ms. Union’s complaints or even ask HR to get involved,” said Bryan Freedman, Attorney for Gabrielle Union in an official statement to People.
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Freedman further explained that NBC’s recent public support of the Black Lives Matter movement has contradicted how they have attempted to investigate Union and her complaints.
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“In sharp contrast to NBC’s recent statement on race, what was truly an ‘outrage’ was the fact that Paul Telegdy, Chairman of NBC Entertainment, actually threatened Ms. Union in an attempt to silence her from telling the truth about racist actions that took place on the show,” Freedman said. “There is no place for this type of racial bullying in the workplace, and it is going to take more than a Tweet from NBC to demonstrate that NBC intends to create an environment free from racism.”
In an interview with Variety Union described larger cultural issues that have stirred up NBCUniversal.
“There are so many people who are committed to making NBCUniversal and Comcast different, who truly want to be a part of the solution and on the right side of history,” she said. Union “In the same breath, there are some people who want the wheels of change to come to a grinding halt because they feel that their privilege is being challenged.”
Gabrielle Union exited the talent show in late 2019 after one season.
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