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The 32-year-old Zimmerman has been fired from her position at East Coast USA Pageant, Inc., where she was an employee for five years, due to racist remarks made on the uncensored 24-hour live feeds on CBS.com. The outspoken Staten Island resident drew ire when she used the N-word in referencing the insurance she was on, among other comments referring to houseguests’ ethnicities.
Lauren Handler, East Coast USA Pageant’s national director and CEO, issued a statement to The Hollywood Reporter regarding Zimmerman’s firing Wednesday, saying that the company is “in disbelief and shock that Ginamarie Zimmerman … could display such acts of hate and racism.” TMZ first reported the news.
“We have never known this side of Ginamarie or have ever witnessed such acts of racism in the past,” the statement continues. “We are actually thankful that this show let us see Ginamarie for who she truly is as we would never want her to be a role model to our future contestants. It is unfortunate that her hateful words were able to be witnessed by so many thousands of Big Brother fans as they were rightfully so deeply offended.”
With Big Brother slated to air its first live eviction July 3, it is unclear whether CBS will address the houseguests’ statements on air or on a future broadcast. The comments have not been addressed in the three edited CBS telecasts that have aired.
Prior to the July 2 episode, CBS distanced itself from the houseguests’ comments on the live feeds by issuing a statement addressing public outcry over the cast’s insensitive remarks: “We certainly find the statements made by several of the houseguests to the live Internet feed to be offensive.”
This comes after CBS moved the live evictions of the summer staple back to Thursday nights beginning next week and after former Food Network star/chef Paula Deen came under fire for admitting to using the N-word in the past.
Read the full statement below:
After watching the live feed from the current season of CBS’s Big Brother we have been left in disbelief and shock that Ginamarie Zimmerman our employee for the past 5 yrs. could display such acts of hate and racism. The East Coast USA Pageant is an outlet for girls and women to gain self-confidence, announce their platform and most importantly celebrate who they are. We believe and teach our contestants that beauty comes from within. We celebrate the diversity of our participants as all ethnicities are beautiful. We have never known this side of Ginamarie or have ever witnessed such acts of racism in the past.
We are actually thankful that this show let us see Ginamarie for who she truly is as we would never want her to be a role model to our future contestants. It is unfortunate that her hateful words were able to be witnessed by so many thousands of Big Brother fans as they were rightfully so deeply offended. We are unable to contact her at this time but when she returns from the Big Brother house we will be terminating her employment for her unforgivable behavior. In a business where we are surrounded by beauty every day we are saddened to see something so ugly come from someone we put on a very high pedestal.
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