Redskins 'very concerned' about cheerleader mistreatment allegations

Chris Lingebach
May 03, 2018 - 4:25 pm

Redskins president Bruce Allen has issued a statement on allegations made in a New York Times article, one which points to mistreatment of cheerleaders on a 2013 photo shoot in Costa Rica.

"The Redskins organization is very concerned by the allegations involving our cheerleaders in the recent New York Times article," Allen said in the statement. "We are immediately looking into this situation and want to express how serious we take these allegations. 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.  

"Our entire organization has great appreciation and respect for our cheerleaders. From the work they do in the local community, to visiting our troops abroad, and for always representing the Redskins organization in a first-class manner, these women are exemplary members of our organization and are worthy of our utmost respect. We are proud of these women and support them during this time. We will continue to take all necessary measures to create a safe and respectful work environment."

The May 2 New York Times article, based on interviews with five Redskins cheerleaders who were involved, describes cheerleaders being asked to go topless for the photo shoot, as a "contingent of sponsors and FedExField suite holders — all men — were granted up-close access to the photo shoots."

The article also says nine of the 36 cheerleaders were asked to accompany several of the male sponsors to a nightclub later in the evening. While their participation did not involve sex, according to the report, the women felt as though the organization was "pimping us out."

The article also chronicles a "team-bonding" boat party in 2012, set in Georgetown on the yacht of a longtime Redskins suite holder, William R. Teel Jr. The party was characterized by five cheerleaders as a "wild gathering" in which men "shot liquor into the cheerleaders' mouths with turkey basters. Below the deck, men handed out cash prizes in twerking contests."

No cheerleaders claimed they were touched inappropriately on Mr. Teel's boat, while Mr. Teel maintains the same, that nothing inappropriate happened on his boat and he always treated the cheerleaders with respect.

"I have five sisters," Mr. Teel told The Times, adding that at his boat parties "no one was allowed to be disrespected."

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