Anita Hill Calls on Fox News to "Take Back" Roger Ailes' $40M Severance Package

Desiree Navarro/WireImage; Wesley Mann/FOX News
Anita Hill, Roger Ailes

The attorney, who made headlines after she accused then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment 25 years ago, told NPR, "We've come a long way since then."

In an interview on NPR's Morning Edition, Anita Hill, the attorney who made headlines after she accused then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas of inappropriate conduct 25 years ago, shared her thoughts on the sexual harassment scandal plaguing former Fox News CEO Roger Ailes.

While Ailes has left the cable news network he co-founded, Hill thinks the company should do more to punish him.

"One thing I would have the Fox News network do is to take back the $40 million [severance package] that Roger Ailes reportedly has received," Hill told NPR after being asked how employers can address sexual harassment in the workplace. "It seems to me that sends a very bad signal, and in fact if the allegations are proven to be true, then certainly not only has he violated the law, but I would also say that he has actually injured the company in a way that would keep him from being entitled to a severance pay."

When Ailes resigned in July, sources told The Hollywood Reporter that he would walk away with $40 million, the remainder left on his contract, which originally extended into 2018.

Ailes resigned after a number of women came forward and claimed they'd been sexually harassed by the veteran TV executive, including former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson, who filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against Ailes that preceded the additional revelations.

Hill, who was portrayed by Kerry Washington in the 2016 HBO film Confirmation, also discussed how the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace has changed over the past 25 years.

"We've come a long way since then," Hill said. "It is now a part of the public conversation." 

When assessing recent stories about sexual harassment accusations, Hill says there's still progress that needs to be made.

"Even though the men are more powerful, even women who are perceived to have some power have trouble coming forward," she said. 

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