Discrimination

Fox News settles lawsuit from former reporter who said network required women to be ‘physically perfect’

Diana Falzone. (YouTube)

Fox News has settled a gender discrimination lawsuit filed by Diana Falzone, a former reporter for the network, according to Falzone’s lawyer, Nancy Smith. In her complaint, Falzone had alleged that Fox abruptly pulled her from the air after she wrote an essay about her battle with endometriosis, a medical condition that can make sex painful, menstruation tortuous, and cause infertility. The condition affects an estimated one in 10 women, but diagnoses take an average of seven to 10 years as doctors and women alike dismiss its symptoms as normal. In her column, Falzone wrote that doctors told her the condition had rendered her unable to have children, and that she chose to speak out about the condition in order to raise awareness, and help other women and girls who might not even be aware they suffered from it.

In a statement following her termination, Falzone said that she was fired after speaking out about her condition because Fox executives had a requirement that on-air women be “physically perfect.” In response, Fox denied her allegations and issued a statement claiming that all personnel decisions were made on merit. Falzone, who also famously had a story about Stormy Daniels’ alleged affair with President Donald Trump pulled by the network in October, 2016, has declined to share the details of her settlement with Fox. The good news for Falzone isn’t limited to having won a settlement from her former employer: in a Facebook post, the reporter announced that she recently became pregnant through in vitro fertilization.

Over the past year, Fox has been sued by a former employee who claimed she was fired for reporting gender discrimination, a former contributor who said she was raped by a Fox News anchor, and more than 20 women, including Gretchen Carlson, who accused the late Roger Ailes, former CEO of Fox News, of sexual harassment. Carlson would win a $20 million settlement from Fox, as well as a rare public apology from the company. Former Fox talk show host Bill O’Reilly was also fired from the network amidst damning reports that he and Fox news had paid $13 million to at least five women to settle sexual harassment claims against him.

Below, watch a video of Falzone talking about her experience with endometriosis.

Read the full story at Reuters and CNN.

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