Millennials are used to living in the public eye. They have grown up expressing themselves, sometimes through photographs, on Instagram, Twitter, and other social media forums. While older generations might feel over-exposed living their lives in such a public way, it comes as second nature to millennials. However, even for those who are social-media-savvy, there can be a high price to pay.
A recent example of this involves the NFL, Instagram, and a former cheerleader for the New Orleans Saints. The young woman, who had been a cheerleader with the Saints for three years, was fired for posting a photo of herself in a one-piece outfit on Instagram. According to the team, she broke the rules, which prohibit cheerleaders from appearing nude, semi-nude, or in lingerie. This came amid an allegation that she had attended a party with Saints players, which is also against regulations. She denied that allegation.
After being fired, the cheerleader filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. She alleges that the team has two sets of rules, one for the cheerleaders, who are all female, and one for team members, who are all male. The Saints prohibit cheerleaders from having contact with the players, in-person or online, but the players are not penalized for initiating contact with cheerleaders. Cheerleaders are required to block players from following them on social media. They cannot post photos of themselves in Saints gear, and they cannot visit a restaurant where a player is dining. If they arrive first, they are required to leave, rather than the player. None of these rules apply to the players.
Although cheerleaders are usually allowed to work for the team for four years, this cheerleader will not be able to return. She has chosen to file a discrimination case so that other women, and all Saints employees, are treated equally in the future.
If you have been the victim of discrimination, the Philadelphia employment discrimination lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. can help. We will stand up for your rights when you have experienced discrimination at work. Please call 215-569-1999, or contact us online for a free, confidential consultation. We can offer you guidance toward righting the wrongs and obtaining financial compensation for your suffering.