Congress urges Washington football team to lift nondisclosure agreements

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WASHINGTON (AP) – Two members of the House of Representatives urged the NFL and the Washington football team to release individuals from nondisclosure agreements that would prevent them from discussing sexual harassment and issues in the workplace at owner Daniel Snyder’s club.

Representative Carolyn Maloney, a Democrat from New York who is chair of the House Oversight Committee, and Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi, a Democrat from Illinois who is chair of the economic and consumer policy subcommittee, said Friday that they wanted full transparency of the league and the team.

“Congress has a responsibility to fight harassment and discrimination in the workplace. If the NFL shares our commitment to address these issues, it will be fully transparent about the internal review findings and allow all individuals to speak out freely without fear of retaliation, ”said Maloney.

Maloney and Krishnamoorthi sent a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on October 21 requesting that all documents and communications related to the investigation into the Washington football team be delivered by Thursday.

“While Commissioner Roger Goodell has told reporters that victims and witnesses are free to make their stories public, he should know that many of them do not have this option,” Krishnamoorthi said on Friday. Dan Snyder, the owner of the Washington football team, has imposed gag orders on them, preventing them from coming forward for fear of reprisal. If the NFL and WFT are serious about tackling harassment, among other things, within their organizations, they must allow these people to express themselves freely.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said the league submitted responses to last month’s committee letter on Thursday.

“As we discussed with the committee, we are in the process of identifying sensitive documents while working on issues of privilege and anonymity promised to survey participants,” McCarthy said.

The Washington football team hired lawyer Beth Wilkinson in the summer of 2020 to investigate allegations of sexual harassment and other inappropriate behavior within the organization. The league then resumed that investigation and fined the team $ 10 million in July, saying the club’s culture was ‘toxic’ and that property and senior officials paid little attention to sexual harassment. and other workplace issues.

The NFL said there was no written report of Wilkinson’s investigation.

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