Who knew? Life as a professional cheerleader can be a struggle. Lacey T, a 27-year-old Oakland Raiders cheerleader, filed a lawsuit against her team yesterday for wage theft and unfair labor practices. Her lawsuit is on behalf of all 40 Raiderettes, who earn only $1,250 annually. Some of her grievances are as follows:
- She has to pay for her own fake eyelashes and her own tights. Life is tough for a gal who has to wear fake lashes every day. Life is even tougher when she has to trek out to Sally Beauty and cash them out herself. But Lacey and her fellow cheerleaders have to pay for their own hair and makeup.
- If she looks “too soft,” she’s not allowed to cheer for the day. Okay, that’s some bullshit. What if cheerleaders are just having a bloated day?
- She has to do the annual cheerleader swimsuit calendar photo shoot without pay. They also aren’t paid for the charity events the squad participates in. This is definitely unfair. Work is work, even if it’s posing in a swimsuit.
- If Lacey brings the wrong pom-poms to work, she faces a fine. Raiderettes are docked pay if they use the wrong pom poms, wear the wrong workout clothes, or forget to bring a mat to practice. Hopefully she goes through her pom-pom drawer each morning and makes sure she remembers to pack the medium-sized, not-very-sparkly pair rather than the large-sized, medium-sparkly pair.
- Cheerleaders get shit pay. Lacey and her pals are slumming it at $5 an hour, which I’m not sure is even legal minimum wage. But those who work as team mascots for the Raiders receive full pay and benefits. Additionally, pay is held until the end of the season.
Lacey is entitled to making at least minimum wage, which is one of her major conflicts the Raiders. Her lawyer said she had never seen “an employment contract with so many illegal provisions.” But girl. Do not preface your argument with a complaint about your eyelashes.