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Buffalo Bills Cheerleading Squad, Buffalo Jills, Suspend Activities Amid Lawsuit

April 27th, 2014 at 12:15 PM
By Paul Lane Sabres 101

The Buffalo Bills might kick off their 2014 season in September without the Buffalo Jills on the sidelines.

The club's cheerleading corps said this weekend it has suspended all activities until further notice.

'2010-10-24 Ravens vs. Bills' photo (c) 2010, Lauren - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Stejon Productions Corp., which manages the team, said the decision stems from the lawsuit filed against it, the Bills and former manager Citadel Communications last week. The lawsuit alleges the cheerleaders were paid less than $8 an hour – New York state's minimum wage – and were subjected to psychical and psychological harassment, with everything from their hair to their feminine hygiene managed by team policies.

Stephanie Mateczun, speaking on behalf of Stejon, declined further comment. Lawyer Frank Dolce, who represents the five Jills named in the lawsuit, told The Associated Press that the action was pointless:

"If they cease operations, they will blame the lawsuit for the destruction of the Jills, when that was not intended at all."

The lawsuit claimed the cheerleaders aren't paid for games, practices and most of the roughly 30 appearances they have to make each year. It claims they have to pay for their own uniforms and their own travel. It also says they have to pass a "jiggle test" to examine their physiques and have their social media messages controlled by the Jills. It claims the Jills are wrongly classified as independent contractors.

The Jills were formed in 1967. They were team-run until 1986. They just held try-outs earlier this month to fill the 35-member squad. Rules the team posted prior to the try-out on the Jills website said the cheerleaders would be paid minimum wage.

The Bills have declined comment on the matter.

Tags: Buffalo, Buffalo Bills, Buffalo Jills, Football, NFL

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