One of the best known female presenters on E! News, Catt Sadler, has announced she is leaving the cable channel after discovering a whopping gender pay gap: Her male co-host, Jason Kennedy, was making “close to double” her salary, she said.
The 43-year-old news anchor spoke out in a statement on her website about the “massive disparity in pay” between her and Kennedy.
In a statement on her website, Sadler said she was quitting after “an executive from E! brought something alarming to my attention—namely, that there was a massive disparity in pay between my similarly situated male co-host and myself. More recently, when E! reached out to renew and extend my deal, I learned that he wasn’t just making a little more than I was. In fact, he was making close to double my salary for the past several years.
“Information is power. Or it should be. We are living in a new era. The gender pay gap is shrinking, although admittedly we have a long way to go. And well, I learned this firsthand. My team and I asked for what I know I deserve and were denied repeatedly.
“Know your worth. I have two decades’ experience in broadcasting and started at the network the very same year as my close friend and colleague that I adore. I so lovingly refer to him as my ‘tv husband’ and I mean it. But how can I operate with integrity and stay on at E if they’re not willing to pay me the same as him? Or at least come close?”
Sources told Us Weekly: “Catt’s contract with E! was up and she recently found out that compared to her coworkers she was being very underpaid. She found out Jason Kennedy makes significantly more than her, even though she does more work for the network and she was outraged. The network was not interested in negotiating with her to get her up to his salary.”
E! told Us Weekly, “E! compensates employees fairly and appropriately based on their roles, regardless of gender. We appreciate Catt Sadler’s many contributions at E! News and wish her all the best following her decision to leave the network.”
Sadler was determined not to slink away in silence. Her rousing post continued:
“How can I not echo the actions of my heroes and stand for what is right no matter what the cost? How can I remain silent when my rights under the law have been violated?
“It’s scary. I am a single mother of two boys. The unknown can be terrifying, but it can also be the most beautiful gift. Countless brave women have come forward this year to speak their truth. Females refuse to remain silent on issues that matter most because without our voices, how will we invoke lasting change? How can we make it better for the next generation of girls if we do not stand for what is fair and just today?
“It was my desire to stay at my job. To continue entertaining our loyal viewers around the world. To keep working alongside some of the best writers, directors, and producers in the game. Everyone from the studio crew, hair and makeup artists, to the security at the front door are true friends of mine. They have been my work family and I love them dearly. Unfortunately, however, my decision was made for me and I must go.
“The way I see it, I have an obligation to be an agent for change.”