CBS entertainment chief addresses Les Moonves sexual misconduct allegations

Photo: Bill Inoshita/CBS 2013 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.(LOS ANGELES) — CBS Entertainment President Kelly Kahl took the stage at the Television Critics Association press tourin Beverly Hills Sunday, where he fielded questions about sexual misconduct allegations against his boss, CBS President and CEO Les Moonves.

Many at the TCA conference were surprised to see Kahl take the stage at all, given the events of the past week.  While he declared couldn’t say much about the investigation into Moonves, he insisted that CBS takes workplace safety “very seriously.”

“I think if you look up and down the halls at CBS, you’ll find a very safe environment,” he said. “We have over 40 shows in production and the vast majority of those shows are, you know, excellent sets where everybody is very happy and everybody is very safe. Any time any allegation comes up on any of our shows, it’s investigated immediately.”

As to how the network should deal with Moonves in light of the allegations, Kahl said that like many at CBS, he’s conflicted.

“Leslie has been an excellent boss and a mentor for a long time and he put me in this job,” he said.  “At the same time, we must respect the voices that come forward. All allegations need to be and are being taken seriously.”

The Moonves investigation stems from an article by Ronan Farrow published in The New Yorker a week ago alleging Moonves sexually harassed six women with whom he had professional dealings between the 1980s and early 2000s. 

Moonves has denied the allegations.  CBS says it has hired two legal firms to conduct an investigation into the claims.

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