21st Century Fox, the parent company of Fox News, has spent $45 million on costs related to sexual harassment allegations against Fox.
The number was contained in a Securities and Exchange Commission report filed Monday by 21st Century Fox and made public by the The New York Times.
The SEC report said that in the third quarter of its current fiscal year, Fox spent $10 million “related to settlements of pending and potential litigations.”
Big payments previously made public include $20 million paid out after Gretchen Carlson began the avalanche of complaints against Fox last June by filing a lawsuit against Fox and former CEO Roger Ailes, who was ousted several weeks after Carlson filed her lawsuit. Last month, news accounts reported that Fox and former Fox host Bill O’Reilly paid $13 million to settle sexual harassment claims against O’Reilly who was also fired.
Other lawsuits are pending, including a $50 million lawsuit filed by former Fox host Andrea Tantaros.
The SEC filing said that the company “has also received regulatory and investigative inquiries relating to these matters and stockholder demands to inspect the books and records of the company which could lead to future litigation.”
The filing said Fox News’s “prime time lineup has significantly changed, which could have a negative impact on our ratings.”
The Times reported that during a call with analysts, Lachlan Murdoch, the executive chairman, and James Murdoch, the chief executive officer, focused their discussion on hopes that British regulators would approve the $14.3 billion buyout of Britain’s Sky TV.
However, there is trouble on that front as well.
Douglas Wigdor, a representative of Fox News employees in a racial discrimination suit, told Britain’s Office of Communications that he wants those who have settled with Fox in past sexual harassment cases to be free from any confidentiality agreements they signed as part of their settlements.
“I told Ofcom that the only way for them to get the full truth of what the Murdoch media has done to its victims, is for the company to remove the choke hold clauses that bind victims to silence,” Wigdor said in a statement. “These are Fox’s ‘hidden figures’ — talented, brave people who fought for their rights, but were threatened, bullied and permanently gagged. 21st Century Fox must let them speak to Ofcom.”
Wendy Walsh, a Los Angeles radio host who accused O’Reilly of sexual harassment, met with British regulators Monday accompanied by her attorney, Lisa Bloom. They are also calling for victims to be allowed to speak publicly.
Should a company that tolerates rampant sexual harassment and retaliation get a giant media deal? We say no to 21CF. pic.twitter.com/DtKSJWPgwT
— Lisa Bloom (@LisaBloom) May 8, 2017
The company said in a statement it has addressed the issues at Fox News.
“The company’s management has taken prompt and decisive action to address reports of sexual harassment and workplace issues at Fox News,” a 21st Century Fox statement said. “These actions have led to an overhaul of Fox News Channel’s leadership, management and reporting structure, and have driven fundamental changes to the channel’s on-air talent and prime-time programming lineup.… The company has been focused on its long-held commitment to a diverse workplace that promotes racial and gender equality.”