Redskins ‘looking into’ report cheerleaders were forced to go topless, accompany male sponsors

WASHINGTON — Redskins President Bruce Allen said the team is “very concerned” by a recent report that several cheerleaders were required to go topless for a calendar shoot during a 2013 trip to Costa Rica and to accompany male sponsors on an evening out.

“We are immediately looking into this situation and want to express how serious we take these allegations,” Bruce Allen said in a May 3 statement that was shared on the team’s Twitter page.

The New York Times report detailed a 14-hour day that included a calendar shoot at the adults-only Occidental Grand Papagayo resort on Culebra Bay during which several cheerleaders said they were required to go topless in front of FedEx Field suite owners and team sponsors, all of whom were men.

Later, nine cheerleaders of the 36-member squad were told to accompany male sponsors to a nightclub for the evening.

“They weren’t putting a gun to our heads, but it was mandatory for us to go,” one of the cheerleaders told The Times. The report said some of the cheerleaders were in tears and others were “devastated.”

Allen said the team has heard from a number of current and former cheerleaders over the past two days and has “heard very different first-hand accounts that directly contradict many of the details of the May 2 article.”

Allen’s statement said any Redskins employees who have been found to have acted inappropriately “will face significant repercussions.”

Allen said the Redskins team appreciates and respects the cheerleaders and is supporting them during this time. “We will continue to take all necessary measure to create a safe and respectful work environment,” he said in the statement.

Read the full statement below:

The Redskins organization is very concerned by allegations involving our cheerleaders in the recent New York Times article. We are immediately looking into this situation and want to express how serious we take these allegations. Based on the dialogue that we’ve had with a number of current and former cheerleaders over the past 48 hours, we’ve heard very different first-hand accounts that directly contradict many of the details of the May 2 article. I can promise that once we have completed looking into this matter, if it is revealed that any of our employees acted inappropriately, those employees will face significant repercussions.

Our entire organization has great appreciation and respect for our cheerleaders. From the work they do in the local community to visiting our troops abroad, and for always representing the Redskins organization in a first-class manner, these women are exemplary members of our organization and are worthy of our utmost respect. We are proud of these women and support them during this time. We will continue to take all necessary measured to create a safe and respectful work environment.

WTOP’s Will Vitka contributed to this report.

Jack Moore

Jack Moore joined WTOP.com as a digital writer/editor in July 2016. Previous to his current role, he covered federal government management and technology as the news editor at Nextgov.com, part of Government Executive Media Group.

This article was written by WTOP’s news partner, NBC Sports Washington. Sign up for NBC Sports Washington’s free email subscription today.

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