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Washington NFL Team Hires Law Firm to Review Harassment Claims

July 16, 2020, 10:45 PM

The Washington Redskins hired a law firm to review allegations of misconduct after 15 female ex-employees told the Washington Post they were sexually harassed.

The NFL team hired D.C. lawyer Beth Wilkinson and her firm, Wilkinson Walsh, to investigate the matter and help the team set new policies, the Redskins said on Thursday. Wilkinson represented Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his contentious confirmation, where he faced accusations that he sexually assaulted a woman while in high school.

The Washington Post story -- based on interviews with dozens of current and former employees, as well as texts and documents -- describes unwanted sexual advances and demands that female employees wear revealing clothing and flirt with clients. The alleged incidents took place from 2006 to 2019, the newspaper said.

“The Washington Redskins football team takes issues of employee conduct seriously,” the team said in a statement. “While we do not speak to specific employee situations publicly, when new allegations of conduct are brought forward that are contrary to these policies, we address them promptly.”

The review adds scrutiny to a team already in the national spotlight. On Monday, the organization agreed to drop the Redskins name -- an offensive term for Native Americans -- after it completes a review. Dan Snyder, the principal owner, and Ron Rivera, the head coach, “are working to develop a new name and design approach,” the team said.

FedEx Corp., which holds the naming rights to the team’s stadium in Landover, Maryland, had pushed for the change. And the world’s biggest retailers, including Walmart Inc., Target Corp., Amazon.com Inc. and Nike Inc., stopped selling the team’s merchandise.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Nick Turner in Los Angeles at nturner7@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Nick Turner at nturner7@bloomberg.net

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