Just a day after former Joe Budden Podcast Network host Olivia Dope accused the network’s namesake of sexual harassment, Budden himself has responded, saying he takes accountability and apologizes. Dope left Budden’s podcast network after he made lewd comments toward her while taping her show See, the Thing Is…, just months after the show’s launch in October of 2020. She explained why she left in an Instagram video detailing the comments and calling the experience “embarrassing” and “traumatizing.”
According to Rolling Stone, Budden has since issued a statement in which he addressed the power imbalance inherent to his sexual remarks as Olivia’s former boss, and claimed to support “all women’s rights to feel comfortable and protected in the workplace.”
You can read the full statement below.
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.