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Abuse awareness charity ends partnership with Q107 radio host John Derringer

TORONTO — A charitable organization that works to raise awareness around abuse is no longer working with Toronto radio host John Derringer following complaints from several former co-workers alleging he fostered a toxic work environment.

TORONTO — A charitable organization that works to raise awareness around abuse is no longer working with Toronto radio host John Derringer following complaints from several former co-workers alleging he fostered a toxic work environment. 

The Canadian Centre for Abuse Awareness, which also goes by the name "Abuse Hurts," was established in 1993, and had been working with Derringer for 18 years.

During this time, he helped the charity raise several millions of dollars through his Q107 show "Derringer in the Morning," said Ellen Campbell, founder and CEO of Abuse Hurts.

"We have cut ties with Derringer, and are still absorbing everything," Campbell said in an emailed statement.

"I never, ever witnessed any abusive behaviour and we are just shocked."

Former Q107 co-host Jennifer Valentyne posted a 12-minute video to social media on Sunday alleging repeated verbal abuse and gender discrimination by a co-worker whom she does not name.

Valentyne says in the video, “What would you do if a co-worker screamed at you, belittled you, called you names, shut you out, brought you to tears, and then laughed when he told you to cry all you want? That he didn't feel one bit sorry for you, and let you know with utter conviction that if you went to HR, they would choose him?"

In the days following her post, several former employees of Q107 parent company Corus Entertainment, including former radio hosts Erin Davis and Jacqui Delaney, made similar allegations against Derringer, some of which date back over two decades.

The Canadian Press made multiple attempts to contact Derringer for comment, but he did not respond.

A popular Canadian radio personality, Derringer has hosted his Q107 weekday morning show since 2000, marking his 5,000th show last November. Prior to that, he was among the ranks at The Fan 590 in the late '90s, along with Montreal's CHOM FM.

Corus has since placed Derringer's show on hiatus as the broadcast company undergoes an ethics investigation.

“Any concerns involving employee experience are of the utmost importance to us and we are committed to listen, learn and take any appropriate action,” the company said in a statement earlier this week.

In a statement on Thursday, Corus said, "We absolutely value our partnership with Abuse Hurts and are hopeful about moving forward together in the future."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 26, 2022. 

Sadaf Ahsan, The Canadian Press

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