Days after an investigation found no evidence to support a claim of inappropriate behavior made against Ryan Seacrest by a former colleague, the long-time host has written about the experience in an op-ed.
In a column published late Monday by The Hollywood Reporter, Seacrest called being accused of misconduct “gut-wrenching.”
“To have my workplace conduct questioned was gut-wrenching. I’ve always aimed to treat all of my colleagues with honesty, respect, kindness, and compassion,” Seacrest wrote. “Yet, I knew, regardless of the confidence I had that there was no merit to the allegations, my name would likely soon appear on the lists of those suspected of despicable words and deeds.”
In November, Seacrest wrote, he received a letter from an attorney representing a stylist who accused him of mistreating her when they worked together at E! more than a decade ago. Seacrest publicly denied the claim. According to a spokesperson for E!, an independent investigation launched by the network cleared him of any wrongdoing last week.
Seacrest, who hosted E! News from 2006 - 2012 and is currently the co-host of “Live with Kelly and Ryan,” acknowledged that the allegation against him surfaced “during an unprecedented public reckoning by women in our industry and beyond, courageously coming forward to share their stories, many of them heartbreaking. These women sought to bring attention to the systemic gender inequality that has occurred for decades. I was – and am – amazed at their bravery.”
“I absolutely want to be part of the change, the progress, that is coming. I did not want to be a postscript of evidence of its cause,” he added.
Seacrest also called for “swift and fair” reviews in cases of workplace misconduct.
“We are taught early on that it’s essential to see all sides, to give everyone a chance to explain and to check for exculpatory evidence that may have been missed,” Seacrest wrote. “At a time when improper interactions between men and women, particularly in the workplace, are part of a national conversation, we must find a way to ensure that everyone – the public, private and public institutions, accusers and alleged accused – is given the opportunity for a swift and fair review.”