NFL Agrees to Meet Cheerleaders' Lawyer, but Doesn't Accept Settlement Proposal – New York Times

The N.F.L. did not accept a proposal from two former cheerleaders to drop their gender-discrimination complaints for $1 each by Friday’s deadline, but the league did agree to hear recommendations to improve conditions.

Sara Blackwell, representing former Saints cheerleader Bailey Davis and former Miami Dolphins cheerleader Kristan Ware, said on Friday evening that she would suspend the two complaints for now, in hopes that the N.F.L. was genuine in its offer to listen to suggestions for improving workplace conditions for all cheerleaders.

“I’m grateful for this letter, and I do believe that this is a good-faith effort by the N.F.L.,” Ms. Blackwell said, declining to provide a copy of the letter for publication. “There could be good things that come from it.”

The N.F.L. confirmed that a letter had been sent to Ms. Blackwell from a lawyer representing the league.

“As we said before, our office is working with the clubs in sharing best practices and employment-related processes that will support club cheerleading squads within an appropriate and supportive workplace,” the league spokesman Brian McCarthy said in an email. “The letter expressed that a conversation would be welcome regarding information or recommendations related to the teams’ policies.”

Ms. Davis filed a gender-discrimination complaint in March with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the federal agency that enforces civil rights laws. She was fired by the Saints in January after posting a photograph of herself on Instagram that the team said violated cheerleader rules. Davis alleged that cheerleaders were required to adhere to rules that did not apply to players.

Ms. Ware, another client of Ms. Blackwell’s, filed a complaint against the Dolphins and the league in April with the Florida Commission on Human Relations. She said that she had been discriminated against because of her gender and for expressing her Christian beliefs, something players do regularly.

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