Cheerleaders Want Full NFL Report After Jon Gruden Scandal
Former NFL cheerleaders are demanding the league’s full misconduct report to be released after it was revealed topless images of the women were sent to disgraced head coach Jon Gruden.
650,000 emails were reportedly reviewed by the NFL as part of its investigation into an alleged toxic workplace culture that was created by the Washington Football Team and their owner Daniel Snyder. The investigation led to leaked racist, sexist and homophobic messages from Gruden while he was an ESPN employee.
Gruden’s email leak also revealed that he received a video featuring topless images of WFT cheerleaders that was passed around as part of an email chain.
The video was first reported about by The Washington Post last year, when the publication stated the WFT “produced lewd videos out of outtakes from the cheerleaders’ 2008 and 2010 swimsuit calendar shoots that include partial nudity.” The staffers who were instructed to make the video were reportedly told to capture only “the good bits.”
While Gruden’s messages were released, the rest of the 650,000 email probe remains under wraps. Earlier this week, former WFT cheerleader and marketing director Melanie Coburn launched a petition to make the full findings public.
“The NFL must do the right thing and make the sexual misconduct investigation of the WFT public AND hold Dan Snyder accountable for the history of serial sexual harassment within his organization,” the petition states.
“It’s despicable, really, to see that there is more evidence of exploitation and violation of these cheerleaders who I worked very closely with,” Coburn told the The Daily Beast. “I know that there’s a lot more where these emails came from.”
“Let’s have some transparency and then let’s decide what to do moving forward,” former cheerleader Courtney DeYoung added. “Let’s stop protecting the boys club and just release it.”
Gruden was not initially expected to be part of the investigation into the WFT franchise, making it unlikely that his emails were the only ones out of 650,000 others to contain damaging information.
The NFL Players Association made similar demands, calling on the league to release the full report. But those demands have no legal backing as of now, with the NFL denying the request in an attempt to keep a lid on how far the toxic workplace culture spreads throughout the league.
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