Chris Cuomo accuser Shelley Ross says humiliation and public criticism isn’t enough to stop sexual harassment

CNN anchor Chris Cuomo
CNN anchor Chris Cuomo Kevin Mazur
  • The woman accusing CNN’s Chris Cuomo of sexual harassment told Insider her remedy for such behavior.
  • Shelley Ross said workplace trainings “clearly” haven’t been effective.
  • She said she wants people to understand the “entire landscape” of what women navigate.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The woman who has accused CNN’s Chris Cuomo of sexually harassing her in 2005 told Insider that society must take a new approach to stamp out sexual harassment in the workplace.

“Clearly, sexual harassment training in the workplace didn’t work [in my case],” Shelley Ross told Insider.

Ross, Cuomo’s former boss at ABC, wrote in a New York Times op-ed published Friday that the popular CNN anchor groped her rear during a hug while they were both attending a going-away party for a colleague.

Ross said Cuomo emailed her an apology one hour later, and Cuomo confirmed to The Times that the incident occurred.

Ross suggested to Insider that certain workplace policies – particularly the most punitive ones – have been ineffective at protecting women and deterring men.

“I really think we have to find a way forward that doesn’t threaten men that they’re going to lose their jobs in 36 hours,” Ross said.

“Clearly, humiliating Matt Lauer wasn’t a deterrent for others,” she added, referring to the longtime NBC personality who was fired in 2018 amid a slew of sexual misconduct allegations.

Ross added that she’d seen comments on her Times op-ed suggesting that Cuomo groping her 16 years ago wasn’t such a big deal. But she said that response showed that many people don’t understand the scope of what women face in the workplace.

“I get that reaction,” she said, noting that she experienced much more than just one incident over her decades-long career.

“I think we have to figure out a way to have external investigations, and have some sort of process where people just own the truth,” she said. “And I think if we saw the entire landscape of what women are navigating, I think that that could help affect change.”

Cuomo did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.