Lisa hits out: ‘I’ve been chased down the street’
LISA Wilkinson has opened up about the "overwhelming" attention that has surrounded her move from Nine to Ten in an emotional column.
The former Today host, who dramatically quit the show last Monday evening only to announce a new gig with Ten's The Project an hour later, has penned a column titled "A Little Bit Of Perspective About What's Really Important" in her role as Editor-At-Large of Huffington Post Australia.
"For the past week I have been the subject of literally thousands of articles, blogs and gossip columns, most of them containing largely inaccurate accounts of my recent job change," she writes.
While Wilkinson says she's "humbled" that her job change has been the catalyst for a national debate about gender pay parity, she says the "intense level of scrutiny has been utterly overwhelming".
"Paparazzi have been camped outside our house. The prying lenses of complete strangers have captured and published images taken through my kitchen window. They've followed my children. I have been chased down streets. Into cul-de-sacs.
"I saw a poor unsuspecting road worker come within centimetres of being run over by a speeding pap, determined to get yet another shot of me for the fourth day in a row wearing black, in the same sunglasses, looking down. And they still got published," she writes.
Wilkinson says the amount of attention she is receiving feels "just a little out of whack" - and instead focuses attention on an old friend from her magazine days, Rebecka Delforce, who lost a short battle to cancer last week.
A tireless charity worker, Delforce built a refuge in Tanzania for AIDS victims - as Wilkinson puts it, she "lived a life of real meaning".
Wilkinson encourages readers to donate to the hospice where her old friend spent her final days.
The column is Wilkinson's first piece for the Huffington Post in six weeks - back in July, she used her column to exclusively reveal she had suffered a broken arm on holiday in the same column, a move that was reported to have frustrated her bosses at Nine.
Wilkinson's HuffPo commitments were cited by the Nine network's chief executive officer, Hugh Marks, as one reason they were unable to meet the star's pay demands. Wilkinson has a reported six-figure deal to write exclusively for the online outlet, a direct rival to nine.com.au.