Report: Fox News pays $15 million to ex-host after gender pay disparity claims

Melissa Francis, a former Fox News host who filed a complaint with New York state’s labor board alleging the media firm of paying her less than her male colleagues, is said to have received a $15 million settlement.

According to the Washington Post, Fox News agreed to the payment, citing documents obtained and examined by the publication.

The news network said it has “undergone a comprehensive overhaul of its entire workplace culture,”, particularly in areas that encourage women, in a statement to The Hill.

The statement read, “we parted ways with Melissa Francis over a year and a half ago and her allegations were entirely without merit. We have also fully cooperated with the New York State Department of Labor’s investigation and look forward to the completion of this matter.”

Francis began her career as an actress in “Little House on the Prairie,” before going on to acquire an economics degree and work for CNBC.

She went on to co-host popular shows like “Outnumbered” and “After The Bell” for Fox News from 2012 to October 2020.

She filed a complaint with the New York State Department of Labor soon before her firing, alleging Fox of imposing pay discrepancies between men and women.

Her attorney, Kevin Mintzer, said Francis filed the Labor Relations complaint “not for herself but
for the women of the company who remain behind.”

The state’s labor commissioner was said to be investigating Fox for the ex-claims host of bias and unequal compensation in December.

Fox News has previously faced allegations of gender bias and sexual harassment, including a scandal involving former CEO Roger Ailes, who resigned in 2016 amid sexual harassment allegations.

In 2016, Fox paid ex-host Gretchen Carlson a $20 million settlement after she filed a sexual harassment claim against the business and the late Ailes.

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