The Recording Academy has denied embattled president/CEO Deborah Dugan’s request for launch from the arbitration settlement she signed earlier than becoming a member of the nonprofit group in August 2019, however says it’s prepared to waive its confidentiality provision — that means the method can play out publicly.
As a part of her employment contract, Dugan had agreed to arbitrate any future disputes between herself and the academy confidentially and in non-public. The Recording Academy is agreeing to waive the confidentiality provision within the arbitration clause, however is holding Dugan to the arbitration settlement as a substitute of signing off on presumably permitting the dispute to maneuver to civil litigation by way of the courts.
“I’ve nothing to cover. The general public and the music business have the fitting to know what’s going on behind closed doorways on the Academy,” Dugan wrote in a Jan. 29 letter to the manager committee of the academy’s board of trustees asking for the discharge. “Pressured arbitration takes away a sufferer’s proper to a trial by a jury of her friends, and on the identical time gives safety for perpetrators of misconduct.”
“You and the Recording Academy negotiated and signed your Employment Settlement fewer than 9 months in the past,” states a letter issued Tuesday (Feb. 4) signed by Harvey Mason Jr., the chair of the Recording Academy’s board of trustees, on behalf to the board’s govt committee. “You have been represented in these negotiations by a lawyer of your selecting, and also you agreed at the moment to all the phrases and circumstances of the Employment Settlement,” together with resolving disputes by way of “a mutually-selected impartial arbitrator from the American Arbitration Affiliation…. Arbitration has been uniformly acknowledged by courts and commentators alike as a wholly honest course of for attaining justice, whereas normally being far less expensive than full-blown civil litigation.”
Mason can also be serving as interim CEO of the Recording Academy, since Dugan was positioned on administrative depart Jan. 16 after a senior staffer, understood to be Claudine Little — former president/CEO Neil Portnow’s longtime proper hand — accused her of misconduct.
5 days later, Dugan filed a sexual harassment and discrimination grievance with the Equal Employment Alternative Fee, wherein she included a memo she had despatched the academy on Dec. 22 alleging “egregious conflicts of curiosity, improper self-dealing by Board members and voting irregularities” with respect to the Grammys. The Academy has launched investigations into each the assistant’s accusations of misconduct and the allegations in Dugan’s grievance.
Whereas the 2 sides do not agree on a lot, the Recording Academy agrees to the “transparency and accountability” that Dugan requested.
“The Recording Academy has completely nothing to cover and, in actual fact, welcomes the chance to inform its story in order that the complete music group and the world can hear the reality — and nothing however the reality — about what you probably did to this proud establishment throughout your temporary tenure as President/CEO,” Mason’s letter states. “In brief, we welcome a full public airing of your allegations towards the Academy in addition to the Academy’s many claims and defenses towards you.”
The Recording Academy asks that following its settlement to waive the confidentiality settlement, Dugan verify in writing a reciprocal waiver agreeing to the identical. “If you happen to actually need a course of with ‘transparency and accountability’ then please be part of us in waiving the confidentiality provision of the contract. As quickly as you notify us in writing of your consent, we will proceed with resolving this matter out within the open, and for all of the world to see.”
Responding to the letter, Dugan’s legal professional, Douglas Wigdor, instructed Billboard, “The Recording Academy’s efforts at portraying arbitration as a good course of for workers is disingenuous as everybody is aware of arbitration unfairly favors, protects, and insulates employers from their illegal actions. It’s telling that the Recording Academy is unwilling to permit a jury of Ms. Dugan’s friends determine this matter.”