Joe Budden apologises after podcast host Olivia Dope claims he sexually harassed her
Joe Budden has issued an apology after he was accused of sexual harassment by podcast host Olivia Dope.
This week, the DJ and former host of The Joe Budden Network shared a video in which she claimed Budden had sexually harassed her during the recording of an episode of her female-led podcast, See, the Thing Is.
Budden had been a guest on the episode at the time, when he was hosted by Dope, Bridget Kelly and Mandii B.
In a 26-minute video, Dope went through a detailed list of the incidents that allegedly took place during the recording.
She claimed that Budden “continuously made sexual, suggestive remarks to [her] that made [her] extremely uncomfortable, as well as fearful of dampening the mood if [she] didn’t laugh along while he made those sexual remarks to [her]”.
She also claimed that there was an incident where Budden asked if he could hug her, but when she watched the episode back she noticed “he was moving his hips while he was hugging me”.
Dope said that these alleged incidents led to her quitting the podcast.
In a statement to Rolling Stone, Budden has now apologised to Dope.
“As a podcaster, it is my job to address topics and create dialogue around them,” he said.
“During the conversation on the See, the Thing Is podcast I didn’t handle the topics with the sensitivity they deserved. I recognise my words and power in that situation created an upsetting environment for Olivia. Upon reflection, both the network and I take accountability for this.”
He continued: “I apologise sincerely to Olivia, her former co-hosts, our staff, and the public. In an effort to not further any trauma, the episode will be removed from all platforms. We support all women’s rights to feel comfortable and protected in the workplace. We fell short of that in this instance.
“We support Olivia in her quest to heal, applaud her for finding the strength to share her experience, and wish her the best in all her future endeavours.”
Budden concluded by saying he was taking the time to “listen and learn”, and that the network was taking steps to “ensure this is a safe environment for all”.
“We at the network endeavour to continue to elevate Black women’s voices and create opportunities to have constructive conversations to impact change,” he said.
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