Joe Budden has responded to the sexual harassment allegations from Olivia Dope, former co-host of See, The Thing Is, in a new statement.
On Monday, Olivia Dope accused Budden, her boss on the Joe Budden Network, of sexual harassment. “On Jan. 18, 2021, Joe Budden sat in on a recording of the female-led podcast I was a part of and continuously made sexual, suggestive remarks to me that made me extremely uncomfortable as well as fearful of dampening the mood if I didn’t laugh along while he made those sexual remarks to me,” she said. Shortly after she made the claims, a video resurfaced of Budden giving Dope a hug during the recording, seemingly moving his hips during the embrace.
Budden issued the following statement, according to Rolling Stone, in his official response to Dope’s allegations.
“As a podcaster, it is my job to address topics and create dialogue around them. During the conversation on the See, The Thing Is podcast I didn’t handle the topics with the sensitivity they deserved. I recognize my words and power in that situation created an upsetting environment for Olivia. Upon reflection, both the network and I take accountability for this. I apologize 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 endeavors. I am taking the time to listen and learn; we have already begun to make the necessary changes to ensure this is a safe environment for all moving forward. We at the network endeavor to continue to elevate Black women’s voices and create opportunities to have constructive conversations to impact change.”