The life of a professional cheerleader isn’t that glamorous. Most people probably already know this, as cheerleaders usually stick with it after college because they either REALLY love dancing or they’re looking at it as a way to get noticed for more lucrative jobs.
I’ve never been under the impression that cheerleaders make anywhere near a full-time wage, but if the claims made in this suit filed in Alameda County Superior Court on behalf of current and former Raiderettes are true … a job at Wal-Mart looks pretty cush by comparison.
According to attorney Sharon Vinick, the Raiders cheerleaders are contracted for an annual salary of $1,250, which amounts to an hourly wage of less than $5 per hour. The lawsuit also claims that the Raiderettes incur other costs, including fines levied for infractions such as bringing the wrong pom-poms to practice, wearing the wrong workout clothing to rehearsals, failing to bring a yoga mat to practice, or not turning in written biographies on time.
“The club controls our hairstyle and makeup, and we have to foot the bill,” said the lead plaintiff, Lacy T., identified only by her first name, in accordance with Raiderettes policy, for security reasons. “We also have to pay the costs for traveling to all kinds of events, including photo shoots… I love the Raiders and I love being a Raiderette, but someone has to stand up for all of the women of the NFL who work so hard for the fans and the teams.”
Written biographies? Let’s assume they mean the bios they have to write about themselves for the Raiders’ website. Whether it’s for bios, yogo mats or pom-poms, something about fining these poor women seems wrong, considering how much money the Raiders are pulling in from Raiderette sponsors.