'Large number of individuals' come forward to raise claims of bullying and harassment at ITV
The revelation comes from the UK Committee reviewing the recent controversy surrounding Phillip Schofield.
The UK's Culture, Media and Sport (CMS) Committee has said that "a large number of individuals" have come forward to "raise claims of toxic working cultures, bullying, discrimination and harassment" at ITV.
Having conducted a review into the Schofield controversy and ITV, CMS has published correspondence between the committee's chair Caroline Dinenage and ITV CEO Carolyn McCall.
In a letter to McCall sent on 24 July, Dinenage writes:
"In the month that has passed since your appearance before the Committee, we have been contacted by a large number of individuals who have identified themselves as currently working or previously having worked on This Morning or as part of the wider ITV Daytime team.
"These individuals speak with great pride about working at ITV and are hugely positive about many of their colleagues. However, they also raise claims of toxic working cultures, bullying, discrimination and harrassment."
The chair also highlighted how ITV is encouraging individuals affected to raise their concerns "through internal or external routes".
ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall
However, she also stated:
"Some of those individuals who have contacted us have described how their decision to raise concerns within ITV has led to further bullying and discrimination, and in some cases having to leave the organisation with a settlement agreement.
"It is easy to understand why those individuals, especially where they have left ITV and do not wish to relive their traumatic experiences, do not feel capable of attempting to report their concerns, or that ITV will take them seriously."
Dinenage also highlighted how ITV had previously stated that This Morning had only been the subject of two complaints in five years, adding:
"We have been contacted by current and former employees who are personally aware of multiple cases, and so appear to contradict your evidence that there have been only two complaints.
"It would, therefore, be helpful for us to understand the way in which complaints, as counted in your figures, are required to be made, and whether this excludes complaints or concerns being raised in other ways, such as with line managers.
"We are concerned that repeatedly relying on claims of only two complaints in five years on This Morning, rather than engaging substantively with other evidence received, together with a potential reluctance of individuals to come forward, risks ITV being unwilling or unable to examine whether there are cultural issues within This Morning, ITV Daytime and the wider organisation that are not being dealt with."
Responding to the chair's letter on 24 July, McCall wrote that ITV will take issues or complaints about working at ITV "seriously".
"I would ask you to continue to encourage individuals to contact ITV via our reporting line SafeCall, through which reports can be made confidentially or anonymously. Alternatively, individuals may wish to contact [leading employment lawyer] Jane Mulcahy KC directly.
"As we made clear to you and the Committee, we are absolutely committed to enabling people to raise any issues or complaints they may have about working at ITV. We always take these seriously and will investigate and take whatever action is appropriate.
"However, we are unable to do so if we cannot engage with those people."
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