Lisa Bloom, a prominent civil rights attorney, submitted her request for an independent probe to the New York State Division of Human Rights on Tuesday. The request details the claims of dozens of women who say at times over the past 13 years they were sexually harassed at Fox News. Bloom says many have since been driven from the network and the television industry entirely.
Her request brings together many of the allegations against both O’Reilly and former Fox News chief Roger Ailes, who resigned from the network in July amid harassment allegations.
Bloom represents Wendy Walsh, a former guest on “The O’Reilly Factor” who spoke to The New York Times for a bombshell report published earlier this month. The report detailed harassment allegations from Walsh, who said O’Reilly didn’t deliver on a verbal job offer after she rejected his sexual advances. The Times found Fox News and O’Reilly had payed about $13 million in settlements to five women who had accused the primetime star of sexual harassment.
After Walsh registered a complaint with Fox News’ corporate hotline last week, the network’s parent company, 21st Century Fox, announced Sunday it would have law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison conduct an investigation into Walsh’s claims.
Bloom said the law firm, which has defended 21st Century Fox in the past, will prioritize the interests of the network. An investigation by the state agency, Bloom contends, is the only probe that “can remedy the continued illegal conduct at Fox News.”
Fox News did not immediately return The Huffington Post’s request for comment.