An NFL cheerleader has the Oakland Raiders playing defense after filing a lawsuit accusing the organization of wage theft and a number of other unfair employment practices.
First year Raiderette Lacy T. says the team is breaking California law by not paying their cheerleaders enough and for withholding their paychecks until the end of the season. Her attorney told KNTV: (Via WLNY)
"Not paying someone until the end of the season — blatantly illegal. Requiring them as a condition of their employment to agree to never sue the Raiders, that's blatantly illegal and that's a provision in their contract." (Via KNTV)
According to the lawsuit, Raiders cheerleaders are only paid $1,250 per season, which amounts to less than $5 dollars an hour — only around half of what the state's minimum wage requires. (Via Los Angeles Times)
The filing also claims cheerleaders are not compensated for time spent rehearsing or attending special events, and that the team does not cover their basic expenses such as travel costs.
It also alleges Raiderettes could be fined for not bringing the proper equipment to practices and events, and could be benched if they gained as little as five pounds. (Via KOVR)
A legal analyst for ESPN says the case is surprising and doesn't make a lot sense for the Raider's organization.
"The Oakland Raiders could have paid these obligations for so little money, you wonder why they would swindle. The cheerleaders are making so little to begin with."
Lacy T. and her attorney are hoping to be certified as a class action lawsuit, and believe more current and former Raiderettes will join in. The Raiders organization has yet to comment.