A group of female former Fox News employees on Wednesday released a statement railing against Sean Hannity publicly urging accused sexual predator Bill O’Reilly to come back to Fox News, and reiterating their calls for Fox to release them and other women from non-disclosure agreements.
During an interview on Hannity’s radio show on Tuesday to promote O’Reilly’s interview with President Donald Trump, Hannity called for O’Reilly—who was fired by Fox in April 2017 after numerous sexual-harassment settlements were made public—to make a grand return to the network.
“I keep offering you, go back on Fox,” the Fox primetime host told O’Reilly. “So that you take the number-one slot. I can tell you it's easier being number two because we’ll end the—we’ll end the year again number-one in all of cable, and with that comes all the crap associated with it.”
O’Reilly, who was the top-rated cable news host until his termination, replied, “Why would I do that,” adding: “So I can have security guards go with me everywhere, like I used to?”
In a statement, former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson and ex-contributor Julie Roginsky—who both settled sexual harassment lawsuits with the network—along with former Fox reporter Diana Falzone—who cannot talk about her allegedly quashed Stormy Daniels reporting due to an NDA with Fox—blasted both Hannity and the network.
“It is ironic that a man accused of sexual harassment over the course of many years by many different women is being courted to return to Fox News by its most prominent on-air personality, while his many victims and other survivors of sexual harassment at that same network continue to be bound by onerous confidentiality provisions that prevent them from disclosing what those harassers said or did to them,” the statement read.
“It is also ironic that many women are bound by no-rehire provisions, which prevent them from getting their jobs back, even as Mr. Hannity is all but begging his network to rehire an accused sexual predator,” they continued. “This exchange once again demonstrates how far we have yet to go in ensuring that survivors of sexual assault and harassment are treated with even the modicum of respect and deference that Sean Hannity has shown an alleged serial predator.”
The statement concluded with the former Fox employees calling upon the network to “release all women from non-disclosure agreements, so that the public can have a much clearer understanding why Mr. Hannity’s words are so egregious in this respect.”
Earlier this month, after NBC employees were being released from their non-disclosure agreements, Carlson called on Fox to scrap her NDA. “It would be nice to be able to be able to tell my full story,” Carlson told the Associated Press.
Fox News did not provide comment in response to Wednesday morning’s letter.
This is not the first time that Hannity has encouraged O’Reilly to come back to Fox. This past July, Hannity joked on-air about bringing the former host back into the fold.
“You know what I told O’Reilly the other day on my radio show?” Hannity said to fellow Fox host Laura Ingraham. “I said, ‘Why don’t you come back to cable? I’ll let you be number one again because then I’ll take a lot less crap.’”