Ellen DeGeneres has apologized for the second time to her TV staff amid news that three top producers had been ousted following an internal investigation into accusations of racial insensitivity, sexual misconduct and other problems in the work environment of the talk show.
The news of the departures was delivered to "Ellen" staffers on Monday afternoon during a videoconference call which turned emotional when DeGeneres admitted she "wasn't perfect," a source who was part of the virtual meeting told People.
"I’m a multi-layered person, and I try to be the best person I can be and I try to learn from my mistakes," DeGeneres reportedly told staffers. "I’m hearing that some people felt that I wasn’t kind or too short with them, or too impatient. I apologize to anybody if I’ve hurt your feelings in any way."
The source said DeGeneres was "emotional" and "emphatic about making it better and making herself more available" to those working on her show.
"She acknowledged she can be introverted at times and she apologized if that was ever seen as hurtful," the source explained. "They’re putting in real structures and resources for people so this never happens again and that is extremely important to Ellen. She was emotional seeing everybody. They’re family."
Another source revealed to People that DeGeneres is "dying to see them, that she couldn’t because of the investigation and she really wanted them to hear from her that this is a reset, things are changing and things are going to be better moving forward. And she’s committed to that."
DeGeneres previously told staff in an email that she was disappointed to learn that the set of her show was no longer a joyful place to work at.
"On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show' would be a place of happiness — no one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect," she wrote in July. "Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case," she added.
DeGeneres, whose show has won dozens of awards in its 17 years on the air, also referred to criticism that has been leveled at her personally in recent media reports.
"I’m also learning that people who work with me and for me are speaking on my behalf and misrepresenting who I am and that has to stop," she added.
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