The football team once known as the Washington Redskins have amassed high media attention when the pressure from big name investors made the franchise drop their old name and be temporarily known as the Washington Football Team. Yet, the scrutiny over the Washington Football Team has not ended as the Washington Post recently released an expose detailing allegations of sexual harassment that has lasted for 13 years.
In the expose 15 women, who were former team employees for the NFL team, describe a workplace that perpetrated a toxic culture full sexual harassment, verbal abuse, and negligence that goes all the way back to 2006. Out of these 15 women, 14 have decided to remain anonymous out of fear of legal repercussion since most signed nondisclosure agreements.
The allegations go on to accuse the director and the assistant director of pro personnel Alex Santos and Richard Mann II, as well as the radio play by play announcer Larry Michael of sexual harassment. Santos, Mann, and Michael have all been let go soon after the allegations came to light. The women allege that these men made unsolicited overtures at them, said highly inappropriate comments about their bodies, pressured the women on sales to wear revealing clothing, and ordered them to flirt with suite holders.
Nora Princiotti, a reporter for The Ringer, said that while she is not one of the 15 women making these allegations she too has had a negative experience with Alex Santos. Princiotti claims that Santos told her she had “a great little ass for a little white girl,” and also gave her advise to wear less clothing.
While the franchise owner, Dan Snyder, is not one of the men accused, the women have come to express skepticism over how Snyder and the rest of the high level employees never became aware of the sexual harassment throughout the years. Snyder himself has declined to be interviewed about the allegations and has also refused to release the women from their nondisclosure agreements.
The sole female employee to not remain anonymous, Emily Applegate, goes on to describe her time with the Washington Football Team as “the most miserable experience in my life, and we all tolerated it because we knew if we complained – and they reminded us of this – there were 1,000 people out there who would take our job in a heartbeat.” Applegate and the other 14 women expressed that working in the NFL, which for many was their dream job, turned into a nightmare as they relentlessly faced sexual harassment and verbal abuse that was overlooked by top team executives.
In order to corroborate the 15 women’s allegations of sexual harassment, the Washington Post obtained text messages by former team executives, internal company documents, and went on to interview over 40 current employees.
The team has gone on to respond by submitting a statement to The Post stating “The Washington Redskins football team takes issues of employee conduct seriously. While we do not speak to specific employee situations publicly, when new allegations of conduct are brought forward that are contrary to these policies, we address them promptly.”
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