Every day it seems there are new sexual allegations leveled against a powerful man in the media or the entertainment industry. Tavis Smiley is the latest to be accused of sexual misconduct, and as a result the late night PBS show bearing his name has been suspended.
Smiley, however, is one of the few men to categorically deny the allegations against him.
After PBS suspended his program, Smiley took to Facebook Thursday to deny the “troubling allegations” against him.
Smiley started the video by saying he was as “shocked as you were” to learn of PBS’s “sudden” decision to indefinitely suspend his show.
“Let me say at the outset that I have the utmost respect for all women, and I certainly celebrate the courage of those women who have come forth of late to share their own truth,” he said.
“Let me also assure you that I have never groped, inappropriately exposed myself or coerced any colleague in the workplace ever in my 30-year career.”
Variety first reported the news that an investigation “found credible allegations that Smiley had engaged in sexual relationships with multiple subordinates” and that some feared “their employment status was linked to the status of a sexual relationship with Smiley.”
PBS released this statement:
“Effective today, PBS has indefinitely suspended distribution of Tavis Smiley, produced by TS Media, an independent production company,” the public broadcaster said in a statement to multiple outlets. “PBS engaged an outside law firm to conduct an investigation immediately after learning of troubling allegations regarding Mr. Smiley. This investigation included interviews with witnesses as well as with Mr. Smiley. The inquiry uncovered multiple, credible allegations of conduct that is inconsistent with the values and standards of PBS, and the totality of this information led to today’s decision.”