Sunrise's Talitha Cummins: 'I was unfairly dismissed by Channel Seven while on maternity leave.'

Weekend Sunrise star Talitha Cummins is taking Channel 7 to the Fair Work Commission, arguing she was unfairly dismissed and lost her regular TV hosting gig while on maternity leave.

News Corp reports the 36-year-old new mum was called by Seven News boss Craig McPherson nine weeks after giving birth and was told that her contract would not be renewed, despite her belief that she would be returning to the role upon coming back to work.

Herald Sun also reports that when McPherson broke the news, he explained that Cummins’ casual contract had ended, despite the journalist having been in the role for three years.

In August last year, Cummins gave birth to her first child, Oliver, with her husband Ben Lucas.

Since she left for maternity leave, Cummins’ role on Weekend Sunrise has been filled by returning US correspondent Angela Cox.

Instead, she was offered a temporary role reading the weekday news at 5am. However the role was not conducive to the new mum’s family life, with her husband, co-founder of Flow Athletic, working the same early morning hours.

The news comes after Cummins appeared on Australian Story to reveal her struggle with alcoholism in October.

A photo posted by Talitha (@talithacummins) on


Writing for Mamamia to coincide with the interview airing, Cummins wrote that she never identified with the stereotypical alcoholic.

“I had a good job, was high functioning, educated and didn’t wake up in the morning and reach for a drink, so the label didn’t apply to me. Perhaps that’s why it took me so long to seek help,” she wrote.

News Corp allege McPherson’s phone call came on the same day promotions for Cummin’s Australian Story interview began airing, despite the channel not voicing any problem with Cummins doing the interview when she voiced her desire to.

Cummins had been with the network for nearly 13 years.

Mamamia reached out to Talitha Cummins for comment, but have not received a reply at time of publishing.