It’s been a long time since the Buffalo Bills had a group of cheerleaders at their games, but a return could be near.
To be exact, it’s been three years since the Buffalo Jills shared a field with the Buffalo Bills and it simply hasn’t been the same. After a recent court ruling, optimism has surrounded the situation for the first time in a while.
For those that don’t remember what happened with the Buffalo Jills, let’s go over a quick recap.
Back in April 2014, a lawsuit was filed against the Buffalo Bills by five Jills’ cheerleaders. The lawsuit was also filed against the Jills’ director and the production company.
Essentially, the Jills were unhappy with how they were treated and also felt they weren’t paid enough. After hearing the situation, I would agree that they weren’t treated fairly and should’ve been paid a higher amount for the amazing work they did.
The five cheerleaders decided to join together and get their voice heard. Although they were proud to be able to share the field with the Buffalo Bills and give the fans an awesome experience on Sundays, they described the job as a ‘nightmare’ and were paid ‘mere nickels’ for the ‘hundreds of hours worked.’ They also added that they weren’t even paid New York’s minimum wage.
In addition to all of that, some of the Jills felt like they were degraded at practice, with their coach telling them to work on their appearance and body. One former Jill even stated that the coach would have them “do jumping jacks to see if anything jiggled on our bodies.”
That brings us to the recent news involving this lawsuit.
Recently, a New York State Supreme Court judge ruled that the Buffalo Jills were “non-exempt employees and not independent contractors,” which means the Buffalo Bills should’ve been paying them more.
Although they didn’t officially identify them as employeees, it is a step in the right direction for the Jills. The case will enter a jury, where they will decide who the Jills are employed by exactly.
An attorney for the Buffalo Jills, Sean Cooney, commented on the recent news:
“We’ve always believed that the Jills were employees and that the Bills and their partners were employers, and we think that still is the case now that the court has given us this major victory,” said Sean Cooney, attorney. “Now we hope we can put this case behind us and we can talk to the Bills about getting these cheerleaders back on the field.”
The Buffalo Jills are a staple to the experience on Sunday for the Buffalo Bills. Hopefully this is a step in the right direction to bringing them back.
What do you think of the Buffalo Jills situation? Leave your thoughts below!