British presenter Billie JD Porter has detailed a catalog of alleged inappropriate behavior by Vice Media in a blistering post on Instagram. Among the claims is that, as 16-year-old, she was given drugs and alcohol and asked to perform sex acts on her boss, who is not named.
In a statement, Vice said Porter had brought the allegations to its attention and that it had investigated. It said it encourages employees who think they have been the victim of a crime to go to the police, and it will cooperate with any subsequent investigations.
Porter is a presenter, producer, and model. At Vice she was a reporter and has previously said she was given a business card that read “Lolita Life Ruiner.” In an Instagram post Sunday, she said she had to speak out after seeing a Vice photo supporting the Women’s March.
“How dare you @vice?” Porter wrote. “The past few months have been tough. I’ve been conflicted about how openly I should speak about what I am going through, partially for legal reasons, but yesterday I was sent a photo of a promotional pin that Vice were handing out at the Women’s March in LA and NY, and I cannot remain silent about it.”
The post continued: “Yeah, women don’t forget. I haven’t forgotten being given drugs and alcohol by my boss in the office as a sixteen year old, then being asked to perform sex acts on him. I haven’t forgotten being seriously told by my producers to get drunk before filming because they thought it made me a ‘funnier’ host. I haven’t forgotten the company firing me after what they called ‘inappropriate behavior’ at a company party where I was given a cocktail of drugs by senior management who knew I was being treated for depression.”
Porter said that she complained to her managers, “only to have been made to feel totally insignificant and humiliated by the supposed ‘investigation’ process.”
Vice issued a statement saying it had “worked quickly and decisively to investigate” Porter’s allegations, but did not comment on the allegations’ substance. “We have encouraged her to give further details surrounding any allegations, so we can investigate those as well,” Vice said, adding: “We want Vice to be a working environment in which all colleagues feel valued and respected and have put in place clear procedures for colleagues to raise grievances, and a rigorous and transparent process for handling them.”
The youth-skewed brand has been the subject of multiple harassment allegations in recent months, several made in articles by the Daily Beast and The New York Times. Several staff members have since been fired.
The company said it introduced harassment training for all staff, a whistle-blower service, a diversity advisory board, and has conducted an anonymous staff survey in the U.K. to uncover ongoing concerns.
Porter accused Vice of offering no support for employees “who were abused on their watch.”