Three former stage dancers sued pop star Lizzo- denied the charges
A criminal case filed Tuesday by three former dancers—Crystal Williams, Arianna Davis and Noelle Rodriguez. it claims Lizzo violated California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act by failing to prevent or remedy a hostile work environment, sexual harassment and religious harassment, assault and disability discrimination. The lawsuit claims Lizzo pressured a former dancer to engage with nude performers at a club in Amsterdam and shamed Davis for her weight gain before later firing her. Lizzo allegedly “intended to cause … offensive bodily contact” to Rodriguez, who questioned why Davis was fired. The three also allege Shirlene Quigley—captain of Lizzo’s dance team—berated other dancers for engaging in premarital sex, “took every opportunity to proselytize” about her religion and discussed one dancer’s virginity in interviews and on social media. Lizzo—who rose to fame while championing body positivity—is a four-time Grammy Award winner who released her first major-label EP Coconut Oil in 2016.
Denying all this In a post to Instagram, Lizzo said the suit’s accusations are just fabricated.
“These last few days have been very difficult and overwhelmingly disappointing. My work ethic, morals and respectfulness have been questioned. Usually I choose not to respond to false allegations but these are as unbelievable as they sound and too outrageous to not be addressed,” Lizzo said in the statement. These sensationalized stories are coming from former employees who have already publicly admitted that they were told their behavior on tour was inappropriate and unprofessional.
Lizzo said Sometimes I have to make hard decisions but it’s never my intention to make anyone feel uncomfortable or like they aren’t valued as an important part of the team.
The defendants in the case include Lizzo, who is referenced by her full name, Melissa Jefferson; her production company, Big Grrrl Big Touring Inc. and Shirlene Quigley, the tour’s dance captain, who the plaintiffs say discriminated against them for their religious beliefs.
I am very open with my sexuality and expressing myself but I cannot accept or allow people to use that openness to make me out to be something I am not. Lizzo’s further told There is nothing I take more seriously than the respect we deserve as women in the world. I know what it feels like to be body shamed on a daily basis and would absolutely never criticize or terminate an employee because of their weight.”
Lizzo concluded her statement saying that she doesn’t wish to be looked at as a victim, but I also know I am not the villain that people and the media have portrayed me to be these last few days.