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Bachelorette producer sues over sexual harassment

Bachelorette producer sues over sexual harassment

A segment producer on JoJo Fletcher’s 2016 season of The Bachelorette has sued the show’s studio, Warner Bros.; Mike Fleiss’ production company, NZK Productions; and five producers over sexual harassment. The producers named are Elan Gale, Bennett Graebner, Jacqueline Naz Perez, Peter Scalettar, and Caitlin Stapleton.

Becky Steenhoek says that she complained about graphic, sexual questions to a more senior producer, Stapleton, and then she faced retaliation before being fired, The Los Angeles Times reports.

Those questions included, according to the lawsuit, “Is your vagina shaved?,” “How often do you masturbate?”, “Do you enjoy giving hand jobs?”, and “Do you own sex toys/dildos?”

After she complained, Steenhoek—who’d worked on The Bachelor as a PA since Oct. 2014—was “suddenly excluded from production meetings and relegated to running menial errands for her bosses,” according to the Times.

Then she was fired mid-season.

She is suing for sexual harassment in a hostile work environment; retailiation; sex discrimitation; intentional infliection of emotional distress; and wrongful termination, according to the lawsuit, which was published by the Hollywood Reporter.

Warner Bros. says it investigated her complaints and are “disappointed” that she sued:

“We take all allegations of workplace harassment very seriously. These allegations were brought to our attention and were thoroughly investigated earlier this year. Our findings did not support the plaintiff’s characterization of the events claimed to have taken place, which is why we are disappointed by the filing of this lawsuit.”

Steenhoek also told the paper, “I wasn’t protected. When we sign our paperwork, we’re given a sexual harassment policy that says ‘any unwanted — whether it’s verbal or physical — sexual advances that makes the person feel uncomfortable and is unwelcome, that you’re supposed to report that and it’s not allowed.’ I think it’s an industry-wide problem — these executives are untouchable. If you report it, you get retaliated against, you get fired because then you’re not a team player.”

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  • Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means. Learn more about Andy.

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