The California State Labor Commissioner has sued 20th Century Fox for failing to apologize for anti-gay remarks and actions made by Fox Television Entertainment Group chairman Sandy Grushow.
According to the complaint, filed Friday in L.A. Superior Court, Grushow repeatedly humiliated Randy Stone, senior vice president of talent and casting for network television, by making remarks alluding to Stone’s sexual orientation. Stone is gay.
In March 1998, Stone inquired of Fox’s human resources department about the company’s parental leave policy because he was planning to have a child. Shortly thereafter, Grushow rescinded approval for Stone to take a planned annual business trip to New York. In June, Grushow told Stone that the situation was not working out at Fox and that he understood that Stone would want to make his family a priority, even though Stone had not told Grushow about his intention to take family leave.
According to the complaint, Grushow told Stone that unless Fox could settle out his contract, he would be moved into a smaller office.
Stone was terminated in July 1998 on the pretext of poor performance and filed a complaint with the Labor Commission. Following an investigation, the commissioner concluded that Stone had been illegally discriminated against on the basis of his sexual orientation.
Fox has refused to comply with an order of the Labor Commissioner that it issue and post an apology letter and desist from further discriminatory conduct.
Fox could not be reached for comment over the holiday weekend.