We’ve all heard about the Erin Andrews’ stalker case so now, another female sports reporter is making the headlines for alleged “locker room harassment” in the National Football League (NFL).
Although an investigation is currently underway on allegations of harassment by New York Jets team members towards Ines Sainz, the former beauty queen said that she’s trying not to pay attention to all the talk, in fact, she accepted the apology from Jets team owner Woody Johnson who called her to assure her that all Jets members are expected to act professionally and to extend courtesy to members of media regardless of gender.
Further according to Sainz, she would have brushed off the comments from the players, but it was another media colleague’s reaction to her predicament that drew the attention of Association for Women In Sports Media (AWSM). Following the investigation, Sainz claimed that footballs were thrown in her direction during a practice and that she felt all eyes were on her and that players were talking about her.
In response to the harassment allegations, a member of the Washington Redskins Clinton Portis reportedly said that women reporters who happen to look nice in the locker room with 53 guys, it was natural for the men to turn and look and want to say something to that woman. Portis however, later on withdrew this statement and apologized.
Although Sainz has the notoriety of being one of the world’s sexiest reporters, according to Wendy Murphy, a former Patriots cheerleader and women’s rights advocate, it doesn’t matter what Sainz wears –whether its skin tight jeans or see through lingerie, none of that is license to commit sexual harassment.
Further according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, sexual harassment does not distinguish on how a person appears or dresses, no matter how attractive or seductive. Sexual harassment is gauged only through the severity and frequency of the requests for sexual favors or the content of verbal and physical harassment. While the law does not prohibit light teasing or offhand comments, it becomes illegal when it is so frequent and severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment.