Ellen DeGeneres publicly addressed allegations of workplace misconduct on her eponymous show for the first time. Over the course of the summer, several former employees came forward claiming they had experienced hostility, intimidation, and unjust termination.
In a clip of the season 18 premiere shared to Ellentube, DeGeneres addressed the rumors head-on. "As you may have heard, this summer there were allegations of a toxic work environment at our show and then there was an investigation. I learned that things happened here that never should have happened," she began. "I take that very seriously and I want to say I am so sorry to the people who were affected. I know that I'm in a position of privilege and power and I realized that with that comes responsibility, and I take responsibility for what happens at my show. This is The Ellen DeGeneres Show. I am Ellen DeGeneres. My name is there, my name is there, my name is on underwear."
She then went on to address other reports that claimed she was hypocritical and mean to staff and other people not in her inner circle. "There were also articles in the press and on social media that said that I am not who I appeared to be on TV, because I became known as the 'be kind' lady," she said. "And here's how that happened: I started saying 'be kind to one another' after a young man named Tyler Clementi took his own life after being bullied for being gay. I thought the world needed more kindness and it was a reminder that we all needed that, and I think we need it more than ever right now. Being known as the 'be kind' lady is a tricky position to be in."
She continued, "I am also a lot of other things. Sometimes I get sad, I get mad, I get anxious, I get frustrated, I get impatient. And I am working on all of that. I am a work in progress, and I'm especially working on the impatience thing because, and it's not going well, because it's not happening fast enough I will tell you that."
DeGeneres then went on to add that she didn't feel that she could fool people for 17 years if she was actually a mean person. "This is me and my intention is to always be the best person I can be," she claimed.
The monologue concluded with a promise to make her staff happy and to be the "one hour a day that people can go to escape." She concluded, "I want to continue to help all the people that we help every day. And I'm committed to making this the best season that we have ever had."
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