Joe Budden apologizes to Olivia Dope for making her feel uncomfortable in the workplace

Joe Budden has responded to claims by DJ Olivia Dope that she was sexually harassed by the former rap star.

Olivia Dope is Budden’s former co-host of See, The Thing Is. Yesterday, May 17, Dope issued a statement where she made the accusations. She alleged that Budden made several and continuous sexual remarks to her that made her feel uncomfortable.

Not surprisingly, a little while after the statement was made public, a video began making the rounds on social media, which showed Joe Budden giving Dope a hug during the recording in a somewhat provocative manner as his hips could be seen moving during the embrace.

The Rolling Stone obtained Joey’s official statement responding to Dope’s allegations. He acknowledged his role in making Dope feel uncomfortable and apologized for the incident as well. While he didn’t totally admit to sexual harassment, he said that the episode would be removed to not further escalate Dope’s trauma.

“As a podcaster, it is my job to address topics and create dialogue around them,” Budden said in his statement. “During the conversation on the See, The Thing Is podcast I didn’t handle the topics with the sensitivity they deserved. I recognize my words and power in that situation created an upsetting environment for Olivia. Upon reflection, both the network and I take accountability for this. I apologize sincerely to Olivia, her former co-hosts, our staff, and the public. In an effort to not further any trauma, the episode will be removed from all platforms.”

He added that he and the network support women’s rights to feel comfortable while doing their job and that they should be protected and feel protected in the workplace. Budden also admitted that his podcast fell short of that and pledges to make it right by first start listening.

He ended the statement by saying that it was the network’s intention to “elevate Black women’s voices and create opportunities to have constructive conversations to impact change.”

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Joe Budden Accused Of Sexual Harassment By DJ Olivia Dope

DJ Olivia Dope is calling out Joe Budden for sexual harassment after her departure from the Joe Budden Network.

Joe Budden is in the midst of absolute turmoil with all the fallout surrounding his podcasts. While he has come under fire for dismissing two of his longtime co-hosts from The Joe Budden Podcast, former co-host of See, The Thing Is, another podcast on the Joe Budden Network is speaking out about sexual harassment that she faced from her boss while on the job. Olivia Dope posted a twenty-six-minute video on Instagram detailing her “traumatic” and “mortifying” experience working with Joe Budden.

“On Jan. 18, 2021, Joe Budden sat in on a recording of the female-led podcast I was a part of and continuously made sexual, suggestive remarks to me that made me extremely uncomfortable as well as fearful of dampening the mood if I didn’t laugh along while he made those sexual remarks to me,” she says in the confessional video. “Those moments not only live on the internet forever, but it also forced me into the decision of quitting the podcast.”

Olivia gave a breakdown of one particular episode of the podcast (episode 16) where Budden was egregiously unprofessional towards her. “I’m going to start from 13:48, Joe calls me out saying I never reached out to him privately or personally,” she explained. “This information is important because it proves my lack of familiarity with this person. That’s what makes everything that transpired afterward so uncomfortable…At 13:34, there’s an edit, because Joe says him and I should speak more, because ‘he’s been wanting to f**k me since we met.”

“Everyone in the studio laughed uncomfortably while one of my co-hosts confirmed that to be true,” she continued. “I am mortified by this revelation not only because it was done in front of the entire production staff but it was done while we were recording audio as well as visual…That scene was cut out…At 19:26 seconds, another edit happens because Joe makes another suggestion to having sex with me.”

In addition to inappropriate comments, Dope shared a particular moment that has now gone viral online. Joe Budden asks for a hug during the episode then proceeds to move his waist sexually upon her obliging. “It’s unbeknownst to me until I actually watch back the episode that he was moving his hips while he was hugging me,” she says. “I laugh uncomfortably because I don’t know what else to do at that point. Everyone else is kind of chuckling, and I sit back down.”

Though it’s been three months since she quit the podcast, Dope says she felt she had to address this for herself and for others who might be enduring similar atrocities. “It was traumatizing, embarrassing, and I’ve decided that I have to speak up,” she says. “Not only was it important for me to walk away from it, but it’s important to heal myself and probably help others in the future.”

She was also concerned about the image that is left online of her and how it might impact her young daughter. Instead of falling victim to a false narrative, she felt compelled to set the record straight. “I am mortified that when you search Olivia Dope, the brand I have spent ten years building, that comes up,” she explained. “I am mortified that after I quit, I had to have a heart-to-heart conversation with the child I gave birth to, because she can find it on the internet, her friends can find it on the internet, her teachers, and say that’s your mother being belittled and sexually harassed and called a b*tch.”

Fans on Twitter have reacted to Olivia Dope’s revelation with empathy and utter disgust towards Joe Budden’s behavior. In the caption for her IGTV video titled “Why I quit the Joe Budden Network,” Dope said, “Episode 16 of ‘See The Thing Is…’ was the final straw of 3 months on the JBN. It took a lot to get to this point to speak up, but the healing begins now. Thank you to all my Olivia Dope supporters up until this point and beyond.”

Listen to Olivia Dope’s full statement in her Instagram video.

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