Bell Media launching workplace review following ouster of Lisa LaFlamme

Bell Media will initiate a third-party workplace review after longtime anchor Lisa LaFlamme revealed details of her dismissal this week, saying she was shocked by the decision to let her go after 35 years.

In a statement, the parent company of CTV says it regrets how news of her departure “may have left viewers with the wrong impression about how CTV regards Lisa and her remarkable career.”

The statement, signed by Bell Media president Wade Oosterman and Senior VP Karine Moses, adds the company will launch a third-party internal review of its newsroom.

“We have always taken matters regarding discrimination seriously and are committed to a safe, inclusive and respectful work environment for all our employees,” reads the statement. “Making a change at the anchor’s desk is always a difficult decision.”

On Thursday, the Globe and Mail reported that CTV News Vice President Michael Melling raised questions about the 58-year-old LaFlamme shortly after taking the position, asking who had approved the decision to “let Lisa’s hair go grey.”

The report also suggests Melling was the one who told LaFlamme she was being removed from her role.

In a video published on Twitter earlier this week, LaFlamme said she was informed in June that her contract would not be renewed and that the media outlet was going “in a different direction.” She added she was “blindsided” by the decision to end her contract.

Bell Media told staff in an internal memo that the anchor was given the opportunity to say farewell to viewers and “opted not to say goodbye to the public” during CTV’s national news broadcast.

In 2010, LaFlamme was appointed successor to Lloyd Robertson as the full-time anchor of CTV National News. One year later, she was named Chief Anchor and Senior Editor of “CTV National News with Lisa LaFlamme.”

In a news release through Bell Media, CTV announced that Omar Sachedina was named Chief News Anchor and Senior Editor of CTV National News, effective Sep. 5.

With files from Lucas Casaletto

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