Shelly Sindland, a veteran reporter whose contract was not renewed by Hartford’s WTIC after 15 years with the station, is close to settling an age and gender discrimination claim against the station and its owner, Tribune Co.
Sindland filed a complaint with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO) in July of 2009, accusing the station of repeated acts of age and gender discrimination against female staffers. The complaint described inappropriate directives given to female anchors and reporters by male managers, including a meeting in which then-news director Bob Rockstroh described the station’s Friday newscasts as “Big Boob Fridays,” saying that ratings were up because a reporter had worn a tight-fitting shirt.
According to CT Watchdog, Sindland had a settlement conference in November with Tribune Co. but that an official agreement has not yet been filed with CHRO. It is likely that the two parties have agreed to terms but that the settlement money has yet to exchange hands.
When she filed the complaint in 2009, Sindland wrote on her blog, “I am doing this for my daughter as well as the other women at the television station both young and ‘old.’”