Former Saints cheerleader files discrimination complaint over firing

Mar 28, 2018, 00:36
Former Saints cheerleader files discrimination complaint over firing

A former New Orleans Saints cheerleader reportedly filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming the organization holds cheerleaders and players to separate standards.

Bailey Davis posing in a one-piece swimsuit in a photograph posted on her Instagram account in April.

The cheerleader, Bailey Davis, was sacked in January, in part because she posted a picture on her private Instagram account showing her in an outfit similar to a one-piece swimsuit that the team determined was against its policy. All this nonsense is part and parcel of an anti-fraternization policy that the Saints says is created to protect cheerleaders from the advances of players. Davis claims that the post did not violate her code of conduct, as her Instagram was set to private in accordance with team regulations and she was not nude, seminude, or wearing lingerie.

National Football League players don't exactly have a reputation for being champions of women's rights.

The rules are so strict that the Cheerleaders can not give utter a word except greetings.

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"Very poor judgment to post a picture like that especially considering our recent conversations about the rumors going around about u", Saintsations senior director Ashley Deaton texted Davis (pictured below on the right) four days before she was sacked, referencing a rumor that the cheerleader had attended the same party as a player.

Cheerleaders are also prohibited from making eye contact with players and risk termination if she responds to a player's greeting or advance with anything more than a "hello" or "great game".

Davis says she had worked for the Saints for three years with no problems, save for one incident in which she was accused of attending a party in which a player was also in attendance.

Instead, she was sacked because it violated their code of conduct. "The Saints will defend these allegations in due course, and the Organization is confident that its policies and workplace rules will withstand legal scrutiny".

Saints players, meanwhile, are allowed to follow any account they choose and do not have to make their profiles private.

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She said she hopes her case will help other cheerleaders by forcing the team to treat all its employees equally. "I'd expect you to know better".

Though she denied being at the party and had locked her Instagram account as the team required, Davis was sacked after three seasons on the Saints cheerleading squad, the Saintsations.

The photograph appeared on the cheerleader's Instagram page in January, according to The New York Times.

Despite working for and being employed by the New Orleans Saints, the cheerleaders are not allowed to wear the franchise's merchandise, according to the paper. However, Davis can't sue the Saints because she signed an arbitration agreement, giving up that right.

A group of Tampa Bay Buccaneers cheerleaders won a $825,000 lawsuit against the team in 2015 after one member alleged she was paid less than $2 an hour while with the team for two seasons.

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