|Former KTTV-TV Investigative Reporter Chris Blatchford|
Los Angeles, CA—He came from the Windy City. He, Chris Blatchford landed in Los Angeles nearly a quarter century ago and became a mainstay of investigative television news reporting at the Local Fox affiliate, KTTV-TV. He worked under the leadership of former news director Jose Rios for many years.
In 2011 Rios retired and things began to change but not for the better when Kingsly Smith took over the news director’s job for two somewhat controversial years. According to Blatchford’s complaint, Smith attached himself to the stations legal analyst Robin Sax in an affair that apparently brought much more success to Ms. Sax’s career than to the news department. Within two years Smith was replaced by the recently departed news director, Bill Mondona.
Accordingly,there are union issues and some tough California labor laws that may give Blatchford some needed protection. We must wait and see how this progresses. The reality may be that Fox 11 will not want to have more of their soiled laundry on public display and quietly settle with Blatchford for some agreeable secret amount.
I see this too often in TV news departments especially in recent years. This may all be much more about economy with shrinking revenue and stations exiling older and higher paid people for inexperienced and less expensive youngsters. In any event this is the nationwide somewhat ugly trend within news organizations.
Carney Shegerian of Shegerian & Associates, is the lawyer handling the case and he issued this statement to Crimefile News: “It’s an honor to represent Chris Blatchford in this clear cut case of age discrimination. Mr. Blatchford is a legend in his field – hard-working and an inspiration to many of his colleagues. He remains one of the most vital and ethical investigative news journalists working today, as evidenced by his following and the awards he continues to receive for his work. That he has essentially been ‘put out to pasture’ by Fox because of his age is reprehensible. Employers such as Fox must be made to understand that they simply cannot discriminate against or wrongfully terminate employees – not based on age – not for any reason.”
Attached is the actual Complaint filed in this matter: