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Ellen DeGeneres Issues An Emotional Apology To Her Staff

Over the past few months, several current and former staff members who worked on The Ellen DeGeneres Show have spoken out about being mistreated in the workplace.

Days after WarnerMedia launched an investigation into the alleged workplace misconduct on the set of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Ellen herself is breaking her silence and speaking out in an emotional letter, Variety reports.

After several complaints from current and former employees, Ellen DeGeneres addressed her staff, apologizing for a culture that did not reflect her values.

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Buzzfeed News published a story that detailed the alleged "toxic" work environment that took place on set.

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One current and 10 former Ellen show employees spoke to Buzzfeed for the article.

Some employees claimed they were fired after taking medical leave or bereavement days, while others said they were told not to speak to Ellen if she was around the office.

"That ‘be kind’ [expletive] only happens when the cameras are on. It’s all for show,” one former employee told BuzzFeed News.

"I know they give money to people and help them out, but it’s for show."

“If she wants to have her own show and have her name on the show title, she needs to be more involved to see what's going on,” one former employee said.

After the allegations came out, some of the show's producers were quick to issue an initial statement.

"Over the course of nearly two decades, 3,000 episodes, and employing over 1000 staff members, we have strived to create an open, safe, and inclusive work environment," the statement began.

"We are truly heartbroken and sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience. It’s not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us. For the record, the day to day responsibility of The Ellen Show is completely on us. We take all of this very seriously and we realize, as many in the world are learning, that we need to do better, are committed to do better, and we will do better," they said.

Despite the statement from the show's producers, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that WarnerMedia had launched an investigation into the alleged workplace misconduct on the show's set.

A Warner Bros. spokesperson shared a statement with Variety regarding the formal investigation.

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“We have identified several staffing changes, along with appropriate measures to address the issues that have been raised, and are taking the first steps to implement them. Warner Bros. and Ellen DeGeneres are all committed to ensuring a workplace based on respect and inclusion. We are confident this course of action will lead us to the right way forward for the show,” the statement read.

Now, Ellen is personally apologizing.

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Variety has published the letter she sent to her staff, which has now been made public.

"Hey everybody – it’s Ellen. On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that The Ellen DeGeneres Show would be a place of happiness – no one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect. Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case. And for that, I am sorry. Anyone who knows me knows it’s the opposite of what I believe and what I hoped for our show."

"I could not have the success I’ve had without all of your contributions."

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"My name is on the show and everything we do and I take responsibility for that. Alongside Warner Bros, we immediately began an internal investigation and we are taking steps, together, to correct the issues. As we’ve grown exponentially, I’ve not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I’d want them done. Clearly some didn’t. That will now change and I’m committed to ensuring this does not happen again."

"I’m also learning that people who work with me and for me are speaking on my behalf and misrepresenting who I am and that has to stop."

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As someone who was judged and nearly lost everything for just being who I am, I truly understand and have deep compassion for those being looked at differently, or treated unfairly, not equal, or – worse – disregarded. To think that any one of you felt that way is awful to me.

"It’s been way too long, but we’re finally having conversations about fairness and justice."

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"We all have to be more mindful about the way our words and actions affect others, and I’m glad the issues at our show were brought to my attention. I promise to do my part in continuing to push myself and everyone around me to learn and grow. It’s important to me and to Warner Bros. that everyone who has something to say can speak up and feels safe doing so."

"I am so proud of the work we do and the fun and joy we all help put out in the world."

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"I want everyone at home to love our show and I want everyone who makes it to love working on it. Again, I’m so sorry to anyone who didn’t have that experience. If not for COVID, I’d have done this in person, and I can’t wait to be back on our stage and see you all then.

Stay safe and healthy.

Love,

Ellen"

H/T: Variety