Fox News appears to have a problem with sexual harassment.

There are serious questions as to whether the conservative network tolerates sexual harassment against women.

On Saturday, the New York Times reported that Fox News host Bill O’Reilly or Fox News’s parent company 21st Century Fox detailing payouts made to settle accusations of sexual harassment and other inappropriate behavior made against O’Reilly.

The Times reported that O’Reilly or 21st Century Fox have paid $13 million to five women since 2002 “in exchange for agreeing to not pursue litigation or speak about their accusations against him.”

In response to the Times report, O’Reilly’s said Saturday that he is “vulnerable to lawsuits” because of his high-profile job. Fox’s parent company, 21st Century Fox backed him in a statement.

The Times story said more than 60 people were interviewed, including current and former employees of Fox News or its parent company and people who know the women behind the complaints or are close to O’Reilly. Most demanded anonymity.

21st Century Fox is still dealing with the legal fallout from sexual harassment charges against former Fox News head Roger Ailes.

Former Fox anchor Gretchen Carlson, who sued Ailes last summer, alleging harassment and retaliation. Fox’s parent company paid Carlson $20 million and issued a public apology.

Last July after Carlson sued Ailes, 21st Century Fox hired an outside law firm to conduct an internal investigation into the allegations. The law firm spoke with numerous other women who said they were victims of predatory behavior by Ailes.

Lisa Bloom, an attorney for one of the women who accused O’Reilly of sexual harassment, is calling for an independent investigation into the network.

“How many women have to come forward?” said Lisa Bloom, an attorney for one of the women who accused O’Reilly of sexual harassment. “By my count, it’s already been dozens of dozens of women” who have accused Ailies, O’Reilly and others at Fox News of sexual harassment.

Bloom is calling for an independent investigation into the network. Based on the number complaints against the network an investigation is long overdue.

http://www.phillytrib.com/commentary/sexual-harassment-problems-at-fox-news/article_8c217ece-55a2-53b2-9a36-d011502bb78c.html

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