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    Colleagues of Alan Jones express surprise about allegations after McClymont investigation

    The Sydney Morning Herald’s award-winning journalist Kate McClymont yesterday published a detailed investigation containing multiple allegations of indecent assaults committed by former 2GB breakfast host Alan Jones.

    The story was a lead item in the Sydney and Melbourne Nine newspapers in print and online with detailed allegations from four people.

    Former Alan Jones colleague at 2GB Ray Hadley told listeners yesterday how he severed contact with Jones after a former 2GB employee disclosed to him allegations of indecent assault by the veteran broadcaster.

    Hadley told listeners he had met “some time ago” with the former employee, who made allegations in “acute detail”.

    Hadley continued: “At the time, I offered [the former employee] my unqualified support and I asked him what he wanted me to do next,” Hadley said.

    “I offered to speak to the then-station owner and then-station chairman, or perhaps act as a support person. [the former employee] said he had too much to lose and he’d be crushed by making such an allegation. He asked me to promise I would never reveal what we had discussed without his express permission.”

    Colleagues of Alan Jones express surprise about allegations after McClymont investigation

    2GB’s Ray Hadley

    Hadley appears to be the only colleague of Jones to come forward and admit to “cutting contact” with the former 2GB breakfast announcer.

    Current 2GB breakfast host Ben Fordham is on leave for a summer break from today. He reported on the allegations yesterday, saying Jones would be “innocent until proven guilty”.

    Fordham added: “The story that has been published today doesn’t just impact Alan Jones. It also impacts a number of people who made allegations against him including the former staffer from 2GB.”

    See also: Jones declines opportunity to speak to 2GB’s Ben Fordham about The Sydney Morning Herald story

    Speaking to Mediaweek earlier this year, Hadley wouldn’t mention his former colleague. When asked about his workplace, Hadley replied:

    “It’s never been a happier place,” said Hadley about 2GB in 2023. He doesn’t mention Alan Jones by name, simply referring to previous times at the station when he notes management, staff and even the company lawyers were “terrified” of a broadcaster. “There’s no longer a fear factor.”

    See also: 2GB’s Ray Hadley reveals how he has changed: His politics and his workplace

    The Daily Telegraph investigating Jones too

    The News Corp Australia Sydney daily has put a team onto the Alan Jones story and has a number of features in print and online today.

    The features include a video interview with James Willis who recently departed 2GB to work at The Daily Telegraph. During his time at 2GB, Willis worked with Jones for 10 years.

    Alan Jones

    The main item the masthead publishes today is from reporter Matthew Benns under the headline “Mates maintain radio silence”:

    The Daily Telegraph approached his public supporters, including former prime ministers Scott Morrison and Tony Abbott, stud owner John Messara and celebrity accountant Anthony Bell, who all declined to publicly support him.
    There was one notable exception.
    Former prime minister John Howard said: “As you know, Alan Jones is a good friend of mine. I have no knowledge of the matters canvassed in the Sydney Morning Herald.”
    In the past, Jones famously called his most loyal inner sanctum of friends the Pick and Stick Club. Among those who did defend him publicly on Thursday was broadcaster Chris Smith.
    “I have never, ever been told of such untoward behaviour from Alan directed towards staff,” Smith said. “I tend to pick and stick.”
    Sky News host Peta Credlin also defended her “good friend’’ Jones on her program on Thursday night, hitting out at the newspaper reports.
    “In my experience nothing could be further from the truth,” she said.
    Former colleague John Laws said he was surprised by the reports.
    “What’s printed in the newspapers today isn’t a side of Alan I’ve personally ever witnessed,” Laws said. “I’ve got to say I’m quite surprised by the allegations.”

    Reporter Jonathon Moran writes in The Daily Telegraph about how Jones had the power to give artists a big push:

    What Alan Jones wanted, he got. A TV hosting or producing gig? A recording contract? A book deal? Something on radio?
    Jones’ support in arts and entertainment may not have guaranteed a signed contract but it definitely sent you to the front of the queue for consideration.
    “If he liked you, a simple phone call was all that was needed,” said one top music executive. “When Alan brought a young male artist to the table, the bosses’ edict was to do whatever was needed to keep him happy, even if it made no commercial or business sense for the record company.”

    Nine reaches out to employees

    Sydney Morning Herald journalists Jessica McSweeney and Calum Jaspan report today:

    In an email to all radio staff on Thursday morning, Nine management also said the story may be “distressing” for employees and that a dedicated support phone line had been set up for anyone “who has been impacted directly or indirectly”.
    The email, from Tom Malone, Nine’s managing director – radio, and HR director Vanessa Morley, offered support to employees who may be impacted by the story with a dedicated phone line.
    “The story may be distressing for current or former employees,” the email said.
    “We take our responsibility to create a supportive and respectful workplace very seriously, and continue to work with people across all parts of the business to support anyone impacted historically or currently to resolve issues that may arise in their day-to-day roles.”
    The email urged staff to look out for each other and reach out to colleagues for support.

    An editorial in The Sydney Morning Herald today notes:

    In NSW, a person who sexually touches or kisses another person without their consent is guilty of an offence, the maximum penalty for which can be up to five years’ imprisonment.

    The editorial then notes:

    One of the biggest questions emerging from McClymont’s investigation is how many people knew about Jones’ alleged predilections and remained silent. McClymont has been flooded with messages from people who claim that Jones either bullied or abused them, and she will now investigate these claims.

    The post Colleagues of Alan Jones express surprise about allegations after McClymont investigation appeared first on Mediaweek.

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