In recent months, cheerleaders across the NFL have come forward with complaints about workplace discrimination, and now a group of Redskins cheerleaders are opening up about some disturbing experiences that happened in 2013 while doing a calendar photo shoot in Costa Rica.
In an article published by The New York Times and titled “Redskins Cheerleaders Describe a Trip to Costa Rica That Crossed a Line,” interviews with five cheerleaders who were involved with the trip spoke on anonymity, but revealed some of the things they were asked to do.
Some of those Redskins cheerleaders said they were required to go topless, others wore only body paint while a group of male VIPs watched, but that’s not all. At the end of one 14-hour day, the squad’s director told nine cheerleaders they were required to be “personal escorts” for those VIPs at a nightclub. Some women cried because it was not their choice, but mandatory to keep their jobs. Although the cheerleaders said it didn’t involve sex, they felt as if the team was “pimping” them out.
In response to the story, the Redskins have said the following:
“The Redskins organization is very concerned by the allegations involving our cheerleaders in the recent New York Times article,” the statement read, in part. “Based on the dialogue we’ve had with a number of current and former cheerleaders over the past 48 hours, we’ve heard very different first-hand accounts that directly contradict many of the details of the May 2 article.
“I can promise that once we have completed looking into this matter, if it is revealed that any of our employees acted inappropriately, those employees will face significant repercussions.”
These allegations come two weeks after two former NFL cheerleaders filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the league.