LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – A lawsuit filed Thursday by former “Home & Family” co-host Mark Steines alleges that he was fired for supporting two women who brought sexual harassment claims against the executive producer of the Hallmark Channel series at the time.
Steines’ Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit against Crown Media, parent of the Hallmark Channel, states that in 2017, two “courageous ‘Home & Family’ female producers asserted claims of sexual harassment” against Woody Fraser and others.
Steines, 54, stood up in support of the women, according to his court papers.
“For years, Mr. Steines witnessed Mr. Fraser run a fear-based operation on the set of `Home & Family’ in which Mr. Fraser regularly bullied, verbally abused and harassed cast and crew members,” the suit alleges. “While Mr. Fraser was known to have an explosive temper, he was particularly aggressive and volatile when it came to berating female producers.” A representative for Crown Media could not be immediately reached for comment.
Fraser, the 82-year-old creator of “The Mike Douglas Show,” often made inappropriate remarks about women while on the set, the suit alleges.
“On multiple occasions, Mr. Fraser would make sexually lewd comments about attractive female guests while speaking to Mr. Steines through his earpiece during filming of the show,” the complaint states.
One such comment by Fraser to Steines during a female guest interview included, “Can you seek up her skirt from there?”, according to the complaint.
“Mr. Steines was appalled at Mr. Fraser’s lewd, sexist and misogynistic behavior,” the suit alleges.
Steines, who was fired at the beginning of June, had co-hosted “Home & Family” since its October 2012 launch. He previously co-hosted the syndicated show “Entertainment Tonight” from 2004 to 2012.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)