NBC, The Peacock only hires beautiful people, suit claims

NBC, The Peacock only hires beautiful people, suit claims

MANHATTAN, NEW YORK – NBC, the network known for clever jabs at political figures and hard hitting news reports, has found itself in the courts for sexual harassment, disability discrimination and retaliation. The suit claims the Peacock network only wanted to hire attractive employees, and made work unbearable for some of its female employees. According to reports, NBC requested social media photos before an applicant would be granted an interview. To make things worse, when NBC hired these employees that subjected them to pervasive sexual joking and degrading sexual comments. The hot water started when an employee was fired in retaliation for her complaints of the sexual harassment she had been subjected during her time at the NBC.

Stephanie Belanger brought suit in Manhattan recently stating that NBC, and her manager John Carleo in particular, sexually harassed her, discriminated against her based on her disability and retaliated against her for her complaints. Belanger applied for a position as an audiovisual coordinator. Belanger was told by a recruiter that NBC” specifically asked for good-looking employees” and requested to see her Instagram or Facebook profile before she could be interviewed.  To add insult to injury, once she was hired, her supervisor, Carleo, called her “a whore” and bragged that he had “the hottest coordinator in the office.” Carleo even told coworkers that he was “the boyfriend with no benefits.”

In her complaint, Belanger recounted a story of the type of torment that Carleo would subject her to. She recalls a time when Carleo had booked a dinner reservation for himself and a date. Carleo then asked Belanger to fix his shirt for his rendezvous. Eventually, he told Belanger that he would have to fire her or his girlfriend would break up with him When Belanger complained, the Peacock stuck its head in the sand, completely ignoring the hostile work environment that its manager had subjected its employee to.

To add to her claim, Belanger alleged that NBC discriminated against her because of her disability. Belanger is diagnosed with epilepsy. During her employment, Belanger suffered two seizures while at work, one in 2016 and one in 2017. Belanger was briefly hospitalized for her condition. After the second seizure, Belanger’s boss demoted her and slashed her salary.

Sexual harassment and discrimination based on an employee’s disability is prohibited under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII classifies sexual harassment as a form of sex based discrimination. There are two basic theories of sexual harassment, quid pro quo and hostile work environment. Belanger sued under the theory of a hostile work environment. Under Federal law, sexual harassment is actionable when an employee is subjected to unwelcome sexual advances, innuendos or offensive gender related language that is sufficiently severe or pervasive that a reasonable person of the same gender would be offended by the action. Here, Carleo’s unlawful remarks and assertion that he must fire Belanger or his girlfriend would break up with him, clearly fall under a hostile work environment theory of sexual harassment.

The New York City sexual harassment attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC, have years of experience bringing claims of sexual harassment based on the creation of a hostile work environment. Working closely with our Philadelphia sexual harassment lawyers, our disability discrimination attorneys work closely with the EEOC, receiving six figure settlements on behalf of our clients. If you feel you have been discriminated against, or sexually harassed at work, please give our attorneys a call, toll free, at 1877 4NYLAWs, for your free consultation.


Call today to schedule a FREE sexual harassment or employment discrimination legal Consultation in NY, NJ & PA with one of our top rated employment law or sexual harassment attorneys here at the Derek Smith Law Group. You can reach us online or by calling 877.469.5297. Our New York City, New Jersey and Philadelphia labor & employment law attorneys handle a variety of cases involving sexual harassment, racial discrimination, pregnancy discrimination, and other employment-related claims. We serve clients throughout New York, including Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. We also have offices in New Jersey and Philadelphia to serve you.

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