I’ve written several blog posts commending a journalist who has recently been revealed to be a serial sexual harasser, to put it mildly. He has stepped down from his leadership role in his union and quit the newspaper he called home for many years. His name is Mike Fuoco.
I’m shocked, but not surprised. I’m disappointed that a journalist who had the professional capacity to change his coverage of the LGBTQ community after being advised by GLAAD turns out to be that guy who treats female colleagues like property.
I’m not shocked because sexual harassment is a minefield in almost every walk of life, especially our work lives. I’m not a journalist. I’m a social worker. I’ve witnessed so many incidents of supervisors, adjunct faculty, and field instructors having sexual relationships or inappropriate emotional relationships or flat out sexually preying on students and interns. And just as many people covering it up, turning a blind eye, and flat out rationalizing said behavior.
Every workplace. Sexual harassment was omnipresent in every workplace. Sometimes I was the victim survivor. Other times, I was a witness. But it happened so much in social services that I can’t wrap my mind around how bad it must be in other professions.
So I have zero qualms about believing these women. And the lackluster response of the Pgh News Guild is sad. I hope they will embrace new leadership and make necessary changes.
I will be crawling through my old blog posts praising Mike Fuoco to add a link to this post. Sexual harassment is not an acceptable tradeoff for responsible trans-informed journalism. Sexual harassment is a queer and trans issue.
I am sorry that I misplaced my trust in a man who didn’t deserve it. I am deeply sorry I referred you to him for stories and potentially put you in harms way. I am sorry this truth complicates a dicey labor negotiation, but that lies squarely at the feet of Fuoco and those who covered things up for him. My investment in the Pittsburgh News Guild has been replaced by concern for these many women victimized by Fuoco.
Read the New York Times article
Read the original allegations at the PayDay Report
Read the latest revelations from the Pittsburgh City Paper
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