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Jeff Probst Issues Big Apology on Survivor Finale

'You were right,' host tells former contestant Kellee Kim
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 19, 2019 12:50 PM CST

(Newser) Survivor contestant Kellee Kim pointed out fellow contestant Dan Spilo's "inappropriate touching" starting on day one of the reality TV competition. By day 22, producers had gotten involved and the issue was addressed on the show; Kim was voted off the island that same day. By day 36, Spilo had gotten himself kicked—not voted—off the island for inappropriate behavior, in a first for the series. (It was later revealed he had touched a producer's thigh during a transport boat ride.) And during Wednesday night's live season finale, host Jeff Probst brought things full circle, apologizing to Kim for the way the whole thing was handled. "You were right," he said, per USA Today. "You were right to speak up. ... In the months that have passed, we’ve learned so much about what we could have and should have done instead."

The show's network, CBS, had promised Tuesday that changes would be made, including an explicit ban on unwelcome touching, additional training, and an on-site contact to deal with any concerns, and on the finale, Kim said she hopes that rather than being "defined by inappropriate touching or sexual harassment," she hopes this season of the show is "defined by change." For his part, Spilo issued a statement through People Tuesday saying he was "deeply sorry for how my actions affected Kellee," but she responded on Twitter noting, "It‘s curious that Dan has decided to publicly apologize to me—and just me—on the eve of the #Survivor39 finale for a series of inappropriate incidents that occurred months ago and impacted a number of women on set." Sources say Spilo was uninvited from the show's finale. (Read more Survivor stories.)

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