California legislator wants more pay for NFL cheerleaders

NFL.com

Oakland Raiders cheerleaders sued the team for more money

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch)—NFL cheerleaders’ pay is anything but super, claims a California legislator who has introduced a bill to require all the state’s professional sports teams to treat cheerleaders as employees, with full workplace protections and benefits.

The legislation by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, a San Diego Democrat, arises from a dispute between the Oakland Raiders and their cheerleaders. The dispute also led to a lawsuit.

Gonzalez, was a cheerleader at Stanford University and was a labor organizer before she was elected to the Assembly in 2013. Her cheerleader bill may get a hearing in March.

Cheerleading has often been seen as a glamorous position, but many must pay for hairstyling, uniforms and even travel expenses

In their suit against the Raiders last year, Oakland’s cheerleaders claimed they were paid a flat fee of $ 125 a game, were required to attend 10 “charity appearances” without pay and could face being “benched” from games without pay if they appeared “too soft.”

The Raiders settled the suit for $ 1.25 million according to the Los Angeles Times. The team said it would pay its cheerleaders $ 9 an hour, California’s minimum wage, plus overtime. But that means the cheerleaders’ annual pay would only increase from $ 1,250 to $ 3,200, the Times said.

By comparison, the e highest-paid player on the 3-13 Raiders, quarterback Matt Schaub, had a salary of $ 6.75 million, while its lowest-paid player, wide receiver Rashaan Vaughn, had a salary of $ 420,000, according to sportrac.com.


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