UltraViolet on NBC’s Announcement on Non-Disclosure Agreements for Sexual Abuse Survivors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Saturday, October 26, 2019

CONTACT: Brett Abrams | brett@unbendablemedia.com 


UltraViolet on NBC’s Announcement on Non-Disclosure Agreements for Sexual Abuse Survivors


Women’s Group Says This is NBC Universal’s First Concession that the Network May Have Problems That Go Beyond Matt Lauer 


WASHINGTON, DC — Last night, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow reported that all former NBC Universal employees will be eligible to be released from nondisparagement and confidentiality agreements so that they can come forward with stories of sexual harassment at the network. In order to be released from a nondisparagement or confidentiality clause in their separation agreements, former employees must contact NBC and request it.

This is an important step forward for survivors and employees demanding change. NBC has significantly more to do to meet the demands that will create a safe and equitable work culture.

In reaction to NBC Universal’s announcement, Shaunna Thomas, co-founder and executive director of UltraViolet, issued the following statement: 


“NBC Universal’s announcement that they are willing to consider releasing employees from confidentiality and non-disparagement agreements, as it relates to workplace sexual abuse, is proof that the company is feeling the pressure to take action to address a culture of abuse. Current and former NBC Universal employees have courageously put their livelihoods on the line to demand change and accountability. UltraViolet and our 1.2 million members are proud to have their backs. This announcement from NBC shows clear momentum for change and we will continue to push for more.


“The reality is NBC can and must do more. An independent investigation and audit into company culture is essential. They must hold top executives like Noah Oppenheim, who enabled abusers and silenced survivors, accountable. We also join former NBC employees in demanding that the company release all former NBC Universal employees from non-disclosure agreements to speak about sexual abuse, workplace culture, retaliation and silencing of survivor stories, without requiring them to request permission to do so as well as end the practice of pre-dispute arbitration for sexual abuse claims.”

Earlier this week, UltraViolet members joined with survivors and activists to deliver more than 20,000 signatures, including by former NBC employees, to NBC News HQ in New York City, demanding the network to take immediate action to address abuses of power at the network. UltraViolet also sent an open letter to Comcast CEO Brian Roberts calling on him to commit to proactively develop a safe, equitable work culture that truly addresses abuses of power and laid out the crucial steps that the organization should take to do so.

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UltraViolet is an online community of over 1,000,000 women and men who want to take collective action to expose and fight sexism in the public sector, private sector and the media. Find out more at WeAreUltraViolet.org.