On a journey to Costa Rica in 2013 for the cheer group’s annual calendar shoot, 5 cheerleaders stated, male sponsors have been invited to photograph shoots the place the ladies have been scantily clad or, at occasions, bare.
Those cheerleaders stated many ladies on the group had lengthy been afraid of coming ahead with accusations of sexual harassment as a result of they feared that the group would do away with this system, as another groups had finished when cheerleaders spoke out about considerations like low pay. In 2014, Buffalo Bills cheerleaders sued the group for not paying them for all of the hours they labored, and their squad was quickly disbanded.
“It’s like the women there have been brainwashed to think it’s OK to be treated like garbage,” Allison Cassidy, a former Washington cheerleader, stated in a 2018 interview. “So many of them are afraid that pointing out injustices will lead to the program folding, or that will lead to the collapse of their social circle, but it doesn’t have to be that way.”
Former cheerleaders for the Washington group stated that they had been anticipated to mingle and flirt with followers within the company suites and at tailgate events on sport days. Cassidy and others stated that they had been despatched to promotional occasions the place they have been sexually harassed by males and customarily felt unsafe.
Last year, cheerleaders made related harassment accusations towards the N.F.L. group. Later within the year, the group reached a settlement with a number of former cheerleaders, in response to a individual with information of the deal who was not approved to debate it publicly.
The Washington Post additionally printed an investigation into the mistreatment of the group’s feminine staff, citing 15 former employees within the group’s entrance office as sources.
The group’s proprietor, Daniel Snyder, fired a number of prime executives who have been linked to the harassment accusations, and he employed a Washington-based legislation agency, Wilkinson Stekloff, to look into the cheerleader’s allegations. The N.F.L. took over the investigation, which is continuous.