During “Survivor: Reunion Special” on Wednesday, contestant Kellee Kim opened up about the sexual misconduct by another cast member, Dan Spilo.
Kim sat down with host and executive producer Jeff Probst to voice her concerns about how CBS and other producers handled incidents involving Spilo inappropriately touching her and other cast members.
She previously spoke to Spilo about his actions, as did the producers of the show. But he was kept on and continued to compete.
Spilo was kicked off the show after he allegedly inappropriately touched a female production staff member.
“I think one of the things that has been the hardest thing was the fact that Dan remained in the game even after I spoke up,” Kim told Probst. “When someone goes through something like this or anything remotely like it, to not be supported and not be believed is really the hardest thing.”
— Kellee Kim (@kellee_kim) December 12, 2019
Kim’s attorney, Debra Katz, told the New York Times that her client “was concerned that she was not going to be able to speak at the finale. And if she was allowed to speak, that it would be too scripted and she would not be able to say the things that were important for her to say.”
She was concerned about “whether I’d get a free, open venue to speak.”
A CBS spokesman told the Times, “There was never any doubt in our mind that she would be part of it and be able to speak freely about her experience.”
Probst issued an apology to Kim after the controversy.
“You were right to step forward, despite a lot of risk, and to speak your truth, and I want to acknowledge and apologize for your pain,” he said during the finale.
The host previously talked about how he and the producers of the show had handled the situation.
“I accept my own responsibility in the situation,” Probst told the Los Angeles Times. “We did what we thought was right in issuing Dan a warning, but I certainly respect anyone who feels we should have removed Dan from the game.”