Lisa LaFlamme (58) has been a familiar face on Canadian television station CTV for several years as a news anchor, and her newscasts have been one of the most watched.
Last summer she suddenly lost her job after what her employer described as a “business decision” to move the program “in a different direction”.
Then several people began to speculate if it might have something to do with LaFlamme’s hair, writing The New York Times.
Loss of hair color during the pandemic
The TV presenter herself was shocked that she was no longer allowed to work on the channel:
– At 58, I always thought I would have a lot more time to tell more stories that affect our daily lives, LaFlamme said in a video she posted on Twitter August last year.
His departure from the television network eventually became a debate across Canada, and several newspapers, particularly the Globe and Mail, linked it all to LaFlamme’s gray hair.
The Canadian started dyeing her hair in her twenties, when she noticed her hair was turning gray early.
During the pandemic, LaFlamme chose to let her gray hair grow out as hair salons and other businesses closed.
– Most comments I’ve ever received weren’t from months in Baghdad or Afghanistan, or a few stories – but when I let my hair turn gray, LaFlamme says, pointing out that most were positive.
Was admitted at a meeting
Have before The Globe and Mail wrote that CTV employees and several viewers believed that age and sexism may have played a role in LaFlammes losing his job.
The 58-year-old reportedly received support from a boss when she decided to let her gray hair grow out.
The decision was later criticized by the CTV chief, who reportedly asked at a meeting who approved the decision to “let Lisa’s hair turn gray”.
LaFlamme also reportedly disagreed with her boss over news coverage and resources throughout her working hours, and did not always feel she was taken seriously as a reporter.
Journalism professor at Carleton University and former CBC news producer Christopher Waddell was surprised when he learned the 58-year-old was not cleared to continue. According to him, there was no indication that CTV did anything wrong while it was working on it.
CTV owner Bell Media denies the firing had anything to do with LaFlamme’s age, gender or gray hair.
In a statement, Bell Canada CEO Mirko Bibic said “the narrative has been that Lisa’s age, gender or gray hair played into the decision. This is not the case.”
LaFlamme wouldn’t share details of his resignation, but did refer to a mutual separation agreement.
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