BBC Sees 'Spike' in Sexual Harassment Claims Post-Weinstein

By Katie Kilkenny,

Following a series of sexual harassment claims that has shaken Hollywood to its core, the British Broadcasting Corporation is reporting a "spike" in sexual harassment allegations.

BBC deputy director general Anne Bulford told a committee of Parliament members on Tuesday that the broadcasting company was currently investigating 25 sexual harassment claims, more than it has investigated at any one time in the last three years. According to Bulford, the organization investigated around 80 cases of bullying and harassment in 2013–14, and about 40 total cases in 2015–15 and 2015–16.

"After the [Harvey] Weinstein material was published we reminded staff again of the procedures," Bulford said. "All the time we are encouraging people to step forward if that is the right thing to do."

Bulford's announcement comes a few weeks after media outlets reported that the BBC had begun investigating Radio 5 Live announcer George Riley following accusations of sexual harassment made against Riley by eight women.

Riley's investigation was just the latest gender-dynamic controversy at the BBC, which also came under scrutiny in August, when a list of its 96 top earners revealed that only one-third were female. In October, an equal-pay report at the company found that, on average, non-on air talent female employees are paid 9 percent less than their male colleagues.

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