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How Does Alan Get Away With It? --

Sexual Harassment at WAMC

To: WAMC Northeast Pirate Network -
After listening to Fred Dicker's radio show the other morning on WROW 590-AM--he was talking about WAMC and he gave your site a free plug--I decided to write and let you know there is something you should know about the inner world of WAMC and Alan Chartock.

It's that Alan Chartock continually fosters a very disturbing and truly inappropriate environment of sexual tension and harassment within the walls of WAMC Northeast Public Radio.  It's relentless and it's been this way for a very long time. I've been told that Alan has acted like this even from the very beginning when he first got the station in the 1980's.  Alan's nasty and sometimes disgusting comments and his disrespectful behavior towards many wonderful women on WAMC's staff have been a contributing reason why female employees have quit this station over the years.

I can give you examples aplenty of what I think represent outright sexual harassment by Alan, but I think for now one typical example will be enough to make my point.  It's a true story and it was witnessed at the time by at least four persons in WAMC's front office at 318 Central Avenue, and the incident involved a young, attractive woman who worked behind a desk there.

The woman did not like the positioning of her desk because it faced the wall and required her to sit with her back to the room.  So one day she simply changed the desk's direction and turned it around so that it faced inward towards the center of the room.  Of course, she also changed her chair so that her back now was to the wall and she could sit facing the room.  It was all a very minor change in the way the front office was set up since the room is pretty big and it seemed like no big deal.

Well, when Alan found out that the woman had moved her desk, he was very annoyed that he had not been consulted beforehand.  He came out of his office in the room just next door, and in front of everyone who was in the front office at that moment, he approached the young woman and asked her why she had made this change in the position of her desk, and why he had not been asked first.  She responded honestly: "I don't like people sneaking-up on me from behind."  To which Alan immediately shot back: "Whatsamatter, don't you like getting it from behind?"  At this remark, a second female employee who appeared quite annoyed and uncomfortable at Alan's comment, said to Alan in front of everybody, "I think you'd better go back into your office."

Later, to his credit, Alan came back out and apologized to the young woman, but by then the emotional damage had already taken place, with obvious embarrassment inflicted on the young woman.  Like I said, this is ONE typical example of many such incidents in the day-to-day work environment at WAMC with Alan in charge.

How can someone who's supposed to be a responsible, respected SUNY professor, and chairman of an NPR station that gets listener money and hundreds of thousands of dollars from government and foundations be allowed to continually get away with purposely demeaning and insulting behavior towards the great women who always have made up most of WAMC's staff?  Don't Army Generals get drummed-out of the service for this type of behavior?  Aren't high-level corporate business officials forced to resign in disgrace when they act like this?  So how does Alan keep getting away with it?

Thank you for your site.  Something like this is long overdue.  I hope your site does some good at WAMC.  Please do NOT print my name or email address or identification of me in any way because Alan DOES retaliate against people who cross him no matter how long it takes him to find a way to do it.  He has a long memory and knows many people in the New York State legislature and SUNY, and he uses his contacts to hurt people who cross him even in the small things.

IN THE KNOW
(Name Withheld By Request)
Thursday, May 18, 2000


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