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5 WTF Things We Learned From Janice Rubin's Ghomeshi Investigation

04/16/2015 01:51 EDT | Updated 04/16/2015 03:59 EDT
Rick Eglinton via Getty Images
May0609RE17156131.Photos of CBC's Jian Ghomeshi at CBC in his office and in his studio as well as portrait.Note.Sunday profile.Rick Eglinton Toronto Star. (Photo by Rick Eglinton/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

1. Ghomeshi Ran Without A Leash

Ghomeshi checked in with several managers and senior executives, but there was no one explicitly assigned to be his boss.

“We have also concluded that there was no one who had clear and consistent authority over Mr. Ghomeshi on a day-to-day basis in the workplace,” states the 52-page, third-party report from law firm Rubin Thomlinson.

The witnesses interviewed gave “inconsistent” accounts as to who was Ghomeshi’s boss.

“Mr. Ghomeshi was the de facto boss of the show.”

2. CBC Kept Poor Records Of Workplace Complaints

Witnesses referred to a database the CBC kept to track workplace complaints. Investigators found what “appears to be a basic spreadsheet,” but it was a mess.

The information was not chronological, lacked descriptions of what the nature of the complaint was, what the outcome was, or what disciplinary action managers took. Data collection also began in 2010.

It contained “no consistent” information and was “insufficient for an employer the size and sophistication of the CBC,” concludes the report.

3. Concerns In “Red Sky Document” Ignored

In the summer of 2012, an undisclosed number of “Q” staff drafted a report called the “Red Sky Document” outlining their concerns working with Ghomeshi.

In it, staff flagged a work environment characterized by burnout, not feeling valued or respected, and exhaustion from “coping with Mr. Ghomeshi’s behaviour in general.”

Though not a complaint filed through the public broadcaster’s formal channels, the document was “clearly a workplace complaint,” notes investigators. Staff asked senior executives for help, reminding “leadership holds the host to account, rather than operating out of fear of stirring the beast.”

The CBC failed to act on the concerns raised in the “Red Sky Document.”

4. CBC Lied To The CBC

In a documentary from "The Fifth Estate" called “The Unmaking of Jian Ghomeshi,” former CBC Radio head Chris Boyce explained several members of the corporation were interviewed in an internal investigation into the allegations against the “Q” host.

“They said they had never seen other improper behaviour at the workplace by Mr. Ghomeshi,” he said.

“We spoke to a number of people in a variety of positions in the organization and all of them said they had never been subject to harassment from Mr. Ghomeshi," Boyce told reporter Gillian Findlay.

Janice Rubin’s report outlines multiple instances where Ghomeshi flirted with women in the workplace, including with guests. It also states the former “Q” host was “overly familiar” with female staff, giving them back rubs and massages some described as “creepy” and “disrespectful of their personal boundaries.”

5. CBC Failed Its Due Diligence

From Rubin’s report:

  • “We believe that management’s failure to effectively deal with Mr. Ghomeshi’s behaviour gave him license to continue.”
  • “In fact, over the course of his relationship with the CBC, while these behaviours continued, Mr. Ghomeshi’s salary rose, and Q grew bigger with larger staff, more shows on remote locations, and higher profile guests. In our view, he took advantage of his powerful status and exploited those around him. In a word, his conduct was abusive, and it was directly contrary to the type of workplace the CBC promised to provide.”
  • “CBC failed to live up to its obligations to provide its employees a workplace that is free from disrespectful and abusive behaviour.”

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