The pregnant Duchess of Sussex and Duke of Sussex have not commented on the inquiry but recently denied the claims. The news comes days before CBS will air a tell-all special Oprah Winfrey conducted with Meghan and Harry in what will mark their first joint interview since their royal exit, which was recently made permanent. They are expected to discuss why they left their royal roles.
On Tuesday, March 2, the U.K. newspaper The Times reported that one of Meghan and Harry's former top aides had in 2018 made a complaint about bullying by the duchess, claiming that she allegedly drove two personal assistants out of the royal household and undermined the confidence of a third staff member. The incidents allegedly took place in the years prior to the couple's 2020 announcement of their decision to step back from their royal duties.
"We are clearly very concerned about allegations in The Times following claims made by former staff of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex," Buckingham Palace said in a statement on Wednesday, March 3. "Accordingly our HR team will look into the circumstances outlined in the article. Members of staff involved at the time, including those who have left the Household, will be invited to participate to see if lessons can be learned. The Royal Household has had a Dignity at Work policy in place for a number of years and does not and will not tolerate bullying or harassment in the workplace."
Meghan, who is pregnant, and Harry have not commented on the palace's remarks. They said in a joint statement on Tuesday, after The Times report came out, "The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma. She is determined to continue her work building compassion around the world and will keep striving to set an example for doing what is right and doing what is good."
The Times' recent report echoed similar allegations the British press published about the duchess in 2018, when she was pregnant with her and Harry's eldest son Archie Harrison, who is now almost 22 months old. The couple did not comment on the claims at the time.
They have, however, made their feelings about the British tabloids known. In a 2019 ITV documentary, Meghan got emotional while talking about being scrutinized as a new mother, and Harry, whose mother Princess Diana died in a car crash in 1997, said, "I will not be bullied into playing a game that killed my mum." Last month, Meghan won a privacy claim against a British tabloid publisher in the U.K. High Court.
The negative media coverage of Meghan is one of the reasons for the couple's royal exit and move from Harry's native country. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been living not far from Oprah and other celebs near Santa Barbara, since last summer.
"I am just really relieved and happy to be sitting here, talking to you, with my wife by my side," Harry told Oprah in CBS' upcoming special, set to air on Sunday, March 7, as seen in a preview. "Because, I can't imagine what it must have been like for her going through this process by herself all those years ago, because it has been unbelievably tough for the two of us, but at least we have each other."