Newly Released Court Documents Reveal Nike Employees Allege Culture of Sexism, Bullying and Fear of Retaliation

In the midst of Nike’s ongoing gender discrimination lawsuit.

Fashion
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In Nike‘s current ongoing and long-running gender discrimination and sexual harassment lawsuit, more than 5,000 pages of records have been unsealed, highlighting additional details that allege the company’s culture of sexism, bullying and fear of retaliation.

The records have detailed how Nike’s female employees have found that sexist behaviors and attitudes are still very prominent within the ranks fo the company and that there is a major tendency for corporate bullying and fears of retaliation. The documents date back to 2018 and highlight how female employees are concerned that Nike management are unlikely to make any adjustments nor address their concerns. In a survey obtained by the Business Insider, a female employee wrote that another male co-worker directed her to “dress sexier,” while another employee identified certain executives as “well-known philanderers with lower level employees whom they exert influence and power over.” Another employee witnessed a male executive receiving oral sex from a lower-ranking female employee in the company gym while a male manager was quoted saying, “No one gives a f**k about female empowerment.”

Female employees have described Nike as “boys’ club.” One of the respondents also alleged, “Females at this company have felt very little power to change a culture and environment that has been and continues to be disrespectful to women.” The newly unsealed documents provide additional understanding and color to the allegations that some of the sexual harassment and gender discrimination lawsuits have painted. In the past, Nike admitted to having fallen short of promoting both women and people of color and in 2021, they made more efforts in improving female leadership at the top levels.

After these surveys were delivered, chief executive Mark Parker voiced an apology stating that there will be a management reshuffle. Since the scandal, Nike announced 7,000 workers would receive raises and women now account for 43% of the vice presidents at the company. The new court documents alleging fear culture in the company comes after CNBC recently reported that Nike stocks have surged after earnings and revenues have beat expectations. Nike Direct sales were up 16% for Q2 while digital sales enjoyed a 25% increase.

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