Nikole Gunn

Radio industry responds to #MeToo

For the last week, Radio Today has been examining the issue of bullying, abuse and harassment within the industry.

It was prompted by the allegations that have consumed Hollywood, the #MeToo campaign and a belief that Australian radio couldn’t be ‘immune’ from the problem.

Those who’ve experienced and witnessed inappropriate behaviour in the workplace have responded, detailing their experiences in Radio Today comment forums.

At an industry level, Commercial Radio Australia has stated its position. It says helps members “create a positive and safe workplace free of discrimination, harassment or bullying”.

So, what has been the various network response to the issue?

While some have deferred to CRA’s response, others have been more forthright, including Nova Entertainment.

Head of HR Alana Howe says their stance on workplace incidents is quite clear.

“NOVA Entertainment strongly supports the recent campaigns encouraging those, who have been impacted by unacceptable behaviour, to come forward and have these matters addressed.

“We will continue to provide all of the necessary workplace support mechanisms to provide an environment, where our staff can raise issues and be confident they will be fully investigated.

“We have formal policies and procedures in place to effectively and genuinely investigate any matters raised with us.”

A spokesperson for Southern Cross Austereo stated:

“SCA has robust policies and processes in place to deal with any issues our staff may have.”

A similar response, if not a little more expansive, was received from ACE Radio Network CEO, Mark Taylor.

“Our staff and their family members cam access a 24-hour EAP (Employee Assistance Program) hotline for any personal or work issues, which is completely independent of ACE and is confidential.”

“We have also conducted extensive training within our stations regarding our policies on bullying and sexual harassment”.

Other radio networks have been contacted, but at time of publishing they had yet to respond.

So, what has been achieved over the past week? Radio Today never expected victims to step into the spotlight and publically ‘point the finger’.

What we wanted was a conversation. The biggest impediment to anyone taking that first step is fear of not being believed or of ‘what happens next’.

But if we’re talking about it, then maybe we make it easier for those who’ve been victimised to come forward. If we’re talking about, then maybe we let the bullies know that they can no longer hide.

Maybe.

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