Top ABC News exec on leave after report says she used racist language to discuss black colleagues

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A top executive at ABC News has been put on administrative leave after a report that she used racist language in discussions about on-air talent at the network.

The Walt Disney Co., which owns ABC, is investigating the behavior of Barbara Fedida, senior vice president of talent, editorial strategy and business development for the news division, after a HuffPost report that described a long history of Fedida making abusive comments in the workplace.

“There are deeply disturbing allegations in this story that we need to investigate, and we have placed Barbara Fedida on administrative leave while we conduct a thorough and complete investigation,” an ABC News representative said Saturday in a statement. “These allegations do not represent the values and culture of ABC News, where we strive to make everyone feel respected in a thriving, diverse and inclusive workplace.”

Fedida is the de facto No. 2 at ABC News under its president, James Goldston. She has played a major role in developing and recruiting on-air talent at the network, which has the most-watched morning and evening news TV programs with “Good Morning America” and “ABC World News Tonight.”

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