Eva Longoria Slams NBC as She Supports Gabrielle Union After Controversial AGT Firing
Eva Longoria shared a Time's Up petition calling for NBC to "fix its toxic workplace culture"
“What @gabunion experienced on set at @NBC’s #AmericasGotTalent is unacceptable,” Longoria, 44, wrote on Instagram Monday, following reports last week claiming that Union expressed concerns over racially insensitive situations during her time as a judge before she was fired.
“It’s time for @NBCUniversal to commit to long-term, concrete action to fix its toxic workplace culture and ensure safety and equity for all its workers. Add your name through @timesupnow Instagram story. #TimeUp on the imbalance of power. ✊?” Longoria added.
Time’s Up, the organization created in the wake of the Me Too movement, has launched a petition calling “for NBC to stop protecting powerful men at the expense of its workers and address its toxic workplace culture, once and for all.”
“TIME’S UP applauds Union for her courage and once again calls on NBC to take these allegations seriously and take concrete steps to foster a safe and equitable workplace,” the advocacy group said in a statement along with the petition.
“Union’s experience shows that NBCUniversal still has a lot of work to do to change its culture, so discrimination, harassment, and retaliation are no longer tolerated at the company.”
Longoria’s comments come after news broke that Union and fellow judge Julianne Hough — who joined season 14 of AGT back in February, replacing spots vacated by Mel B and Heidi Klum — would not be returning for the show’s upcoming 15th season. (It has yet to be announced who will replace Hough and Union for the upcoming season.)
Then on Nov. 26, Variety published a report claiming that in addition to Union, 47, expressing concerns over racially insensitive situations on the show, she and Hough, 31, were both subjected to “excessive notes” on their physical appearance, sources alleged to the outlet.
Hough has since denied having a negative experience working on AGT, saying she had a “wonderful time” on the show. She is appearing in two upcoming holiday specials on the network.
The report also alleged that guest judge Jay Leno made an inappropriate joke that was later edited out of his episode.
Leno, 69, addressed the allegations for the first time on Monday, telling TMZ, “I love Gabrielle Union. She’s a great girl. I really enjoyed working with her. She’s really good.”
When the comedian was asked if Union was treated fairly on the hit competition series, Leno said, “I don’t know … but I think she’s a great girl.”
On Sunday, Union shared a tweet from freelance writer and host Joelle Monique that commented on the proper way to apologize — a move that was seemingly a comment on a joint statement from Simon Cowell’s company, Syco Entertainment, NBC and production company Fremantle released on the situation earlier in the day.
Monique’s tweet outlined what makes for a “solid apology”: “1. Sincerely admit wrong doing directly to the offended party. 2. Be twice as loud correcting your mistake as you were making the mistake. 3. Lay out steps to correct your behavior in the future. Anything less is covering your own a–.”
Union retweeted the post, writing, “This! This! AND THIIISSSSSSS!!!!!!”
The joint statement that was released earlier on Sunday said that NBC and the production companies were “working with Ms. Union” in order to take steps to rectify the situation.
“We remain committed to ensuring a respectful workplace for all employees and take very seriously any questions about workplace culture,” the statement, obtained by PEOPLE on Sunday, said. “We are working with Ms. Union through her representatives to hear more about her concerns, following which we will take whatever next steps may be appropriate.”
Last week, Union spoke out on Twitter one day after Variety’s report on the toxic atmosphere she allegedly experienced at AGT.
“So many tears, so much gratitude,” she said in her tweet. “THANK YOU! Just when you feel lost, adrift, alone… you got me up off the ground. Humbled and thankful, forever.”
“When the world feels like it’s falling apart. Try to find your peace,” she added on her Instagram Story the same day, with a video of herself working out alongside husband Dwyane Wade.
Representatives for Hough, Union, Cowell and Leno have not responded to PEOPLE’s requests for comment.