This morning, Hell Inc. released a statement in response to sexual harassment claims made by six hundred and sixty six former and current employees against Satan, Lord of Lies. As of today, Satan has officially resigned his position as CEO and is no longer employed by Hell Inc. The board quickly announced shortly after Satan's resignation that long time Hell Inc. Senior Executive Vice President of Customer Experience Operations, Lilith, would replace the Prince of Darkness as the Interim CEO of Hell Inc.
“Satan’s long service not withstanding, the board members of Hell Inc. made the decision to send a message to our employees that Hell is a safe place to work,” said Abaddon, Head of Public Relations, in a prepared statement for the media. “Although part of our business model at Hell Inc. is the spread of corruption and pure evil there is still room for the promise we made to our shareholders, employees and our consumers that Hell Inc will uphold a zero tolerance policy toward sexual harassment and discrimination.”
Allegations first emerged from the Brimstone Tribune, quickly followed by even more accusations of sexual misconduct from The Ninth Level. Stories of inappropriate and unwanted contact, retaliation against employees who refused advances, even threats of bodily harm are just the tip of the iceberg among the sordid collection of woe.
“Everyone knew how things were. You didn’t cross "The Beelz”. You’d get pitted, which means you either get cast down to the maggot breeding and sorting pits, or the feces collection and redistribution pits. Once you get pitted you don’t climb back through the layers. Your demonic career is done,” said one anonymous source.
On the question of what impact this will have for Hell’s future operations in the soul market, and even brand recognition, talk on the Mound of Skulls is that this shake up has the potential to radically alter the Infernal political landscape.
“This has the potential to be Cthulhu big,” Demogorgon, award winning Infernal political analyst, said on Malphas in the Morning, Hell’s longest running political morning talk show.
“Some investors on Sulfur Street are pretty nervous. Hell Inc. stocks took a dip at opening today. But you think this is a good thing, or is this just a correction?” asked Malphas.
“While I do think Hell Inc. stocks are gonna to take a hit, and probably won’t recover their full value for at least a quarter, this really isn’t about stock price. What this is about is the future direction of Hell,” said Demogorgon.
“So you’re saying this is a revolution of some kind?”
“No, not quite." Demogorgon continued, "This has been a long time coming. Satan was part of that good old boy, unchecked power network who all protected each other. And as long as they kept delivering they could act with impunity. Well I don't know if you've looked around recently but they haven't been pulling the kind of numbers they used to, and that was the crack that exposed the rot.”
“Eons of stable leadership through all sorts of turmoil. Maybe the board acted a bit prematurely considering we don’t know the full extent of these allegations?” Malphas pushed.
“Things are different in Hell now. You have a more enlightened consumer base, more women speaking out who are demanding change, and frankly it’s time for it. That old school demonic machismo, though effective in its day, came with a lot of problems, and a lot of exclusion. Infernal denizens aren’t comfortable with that anymore. So either the board made a change, or consumers would’ve.”
In an attempt to quell investor unease, the new Interim CEO Lilith released a statement soon after Hell Inc's decision. “While I understand the anxiety that comes with change, it is often necessary. It won't be easy. And I can’t promise to sweep away old habits or hurts immediately. What I can promise is that I will be consistent in my commitment. Let me say unequivocally for the record: If you engage in sexual harassment, you do not have a place at Hell Inc. If you engage in discrimination, you do not have a job at Hell Inc. I look forward to working with all of you in making Hell Inc a place where demons of all kinds feel safe."
Calls placed to Satan’s representative for comment were not returned.