Lawsuit Claims Fox News Took a Reporter Off-Air Because Writing About Her Infertility “Detracted From Her Sex Appeal”
Diana Falzone, who hosted Fox411 and other Fox News shows, has just filed a lawsuit against the network on the basis of gender and disability discrimination. Why? Because Fox News doesn’t find endometriosis sexy. Yes, you read that right. The crime of a woman appearing “less attractive” due to a medical condition to terrible men is apparently more dire than rampant sexual harassment.
Falzone states that three days after writing an article in January titled “Women Should Never Suffer in Silence,” she was told “she would never again be permitted to host her own show, conduct her own interviews, or even do voiceovers” by her manager.
In the piece, Falzone writes about discovering she has endometriosis shortly after her 33rd birthday and the need to acknowledge this disease publicly so women don’t suffer in silence. It’s a candid account about the medical procedures she had to go through, coming to terms with her infertility, and telling women who have gone through similar situation that they are not alone. “The more we talk about women’s health issues, the sooner we will get to finding cures and better treatment options,” Falzone writes. It’s a difficult thing to go through, let alone talk publicly about considering how stigmatized reproductive health is in the United States. That taboo not only hurts women, it keeps us from making progress in medicine and public health.
Buzzfeed reports that shortly after publication, Falzone’s supervisors told her she was “permanently banned” from appearing on air. When she asked for an explanation, she was allegedly told “to look for another job.” The lawsuit says:
“The male-dominated senior management of Fox News obviously objected to the fact that a female on-air host had disclosed that she suffers from a women’s reproductive health condition, which, in their eyes, detracted from her sex appeal and made her less desirable.”
Since being banned from the air, Falzone says her career has been “significantly damaged” and the ban has “exacerbated her medical condition.” This entire situation is infuriating, and though it’s not news that Fox News treats women terribly, it genuinely feels like they’re just going out of their way to be as horrible as possible at this point.
Her attorney, Nancy Erika Smith, points out the hypocrisy of the network and the greater problem, stating “The issues raised in Diana Falzone’s lawsuit are a concern for all women. Fox News never banned her male counterparts who have discussed their personal health issues on air. Indeed, those men saw their careers advance.” Here’s hoping Falzone gets the justice she deserves.
(via Buzzfeed, Image: screencap)
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