Washington NFL owner Dan Snyder breaks silence on sexual harassment allegations

Team owners vows to change team culture after former female employees described misconduct

Washington NFL team owner Dan Snyder vowed to revamp the team’s workplace culture on Friday in his first public comments since a bombshell report in which 15 female former employees accused team executives of sexual harassment and verbal abuse.

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The women accused several former Washington executives, including people described as members of Snyder’s inner circle, of a pattern of workplace misconduct from 2006 to 2019, the Washington Post reported. While Snyder was not personally accused of any misconduct, the women blamed him for understaffing the franchise’s human resources department and condoning a “sophomore” culture that they said contributed to how executives treated employees.

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“The behavior described in yesterday’s Washington Post article has no place in our franchise or society,” Snyder said in a statement. “This story has strengthened my commitment to setting a new culture and standard for our team, a process that began with the hiring of Coach Rivera earlier this year.”

Snyder was not quoted in the Washington Post’s report and denied several of the newspaper’s requests to respond to the allegations. The NFL team has retained prominent Washington attorney Beth Wilkinson to conduct an internal review of its workplace protocols as well as the allegations of harassment.

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Snyder said Washington will revamp its culture based on Wilkinson’s findings and recommendations.

“Beth Wilkinson and her firm are empowered to do a full, unbiased investigation and make any and all requisite recommendations,” Snyder said. “Upon completion of her work, we will institute new policies and procedures and strengthen our human resources infrastructure to not only avoid these issues in the future but most importantly create a team culture that is respectful and inclusive of all.”

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The NFL will meet with Wilkinson and take action to address the alleged misconduct based on her findings. The league said it expects Washington team employees to cooperate with the internal review.

"These matters as reported are serious, disturbing and contrary to the NFL's values," the league said. "Everyone in the NFL has the right to work in an environment free from any and all forms of harassment."

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