Gabrielle Union and NBC Reach Settlement Over ‘AGT’ Racism Claims

Gabrielle Union (Credit: Shutterstock)

NBC has reached a settlement with former America’s Got Talent judge Gabrielle Union following her accusations of rampant workplace toxicity and racism at the talent competition series.

“We’ve reached an amicable resolution. NBC Entertainment appreciates the important concerns raised by Gabrielle Union and remains committed to ensuring an inclusive and supportive working environment where people of all backgrounds can be treated with respect,” NBC and Union’s reps said Tuesday in a joint statement.

Specific details of the settlement were not made public.

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The agreement came after Union and fellow judge Julianne Hough were fired in November 2019, after one season on the show.

As previously reported, Union filed a harassment and discrimination complaint against AGT with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing in June. The complaint included an accusation that NBC Entertainment Chief Paul Telegdy attempted to threaten her into silence. Simon Cowell’s Syco, Fremantle Media and NBCUniversal were all named in the filing, which was a precursor to a lawsuit.

In a statement released at the time, NBCUniversal denied Union’s claims: “The allegation that anyone involved in this process threatened Ms. Union is categorically untrue.”

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Earlier this year, Variety reported that Union was fired after she asked NBC and the show’s producers to address an environment that tolerated racist jokes from judges and producers. The publication also said Union was told “over half a dozen times” that her changing hairstyles were “too Black” for the AGT audience.

NBC said it brought in outside investigators who found that Union’s allegations had no basis and no bearing on the decision to drop her as a judge.

“We took Ms. Union’s concerns seriously, and engaged an outside investigator who found an overarching culture of diversity on the show. NBCUniversal remains committed to creating an inclusive and supportive working environment where people of all backgrounds are treated with respect,” the network said.