As reported by Deadline, The Rookie star Afton Williamson—she played the training officer who worked with Nathan Fillion’s character on the ABC series—has announced that she won’t be returning to the show for its second season, claiming that she experienced systemic racism and sexual harassment from the head of the hair department and an unnamed “recurring guest star,” with her concerns getting “largely ignored” by producers until the alleged behavior “escalated to sexual assault” at the show’s wrap party and the person was fired. In an Instagram post, Williamson said that even while filming the pilot she “experienced racial discrimination/racially charged inappropriate comments from the hair department and bullying from executive producers,” and it only got worse as the season went along.”
Williamson also says that an investigation was never conducted despite bringing all of this to attention of showrunner Alexi Hawley, who she says never brought any of this to the attention of the other producers. On top of that, she says she was assured that the recurring guest star would be fired when she accused him of sexual harassment, but the actor not only “reappeared on our call sheet at the end of the season,” but Williamson was even supposed to have scenes with him. When she talked to Hawley again, he admitted that the actor had never been fired and that he had not gotten HR involved, so when season two started filming and her concerns had not been addressed, Williamson decided to quit.