Three former backup dancers have lodged a lawsuit against American rapper, singer Lizzo, alleging a hostile and harassing work environment while they were part of the Grammy-winning artist’s dance crew.
The lawsuit, submitted to the Los Angeles Superior Court on Tuesday, also identifies her production firm Big Grrrl Big Touring, Inc. (BGBT) and an individual referred to as the “dance cast captain” as co-defendants in the case.
Within the lawsuit, one of the three complainants alleges she was urged by the singer to “take turns touching the nude performers” at a venue in Amsterdam’s Red Light District during a tour in February.
Despite her repeated statements indicating her discomfort, the complainant, fearful of potential repercussions, ultimately “acquiesced”, as stated in the lawsuit.
The lawsuit also includes a claim from another plaintiff who felt her dedication to her dance team duties was scrutinized by Lizzo, who made “thinly veiled” comments about the plaintiff’s “weight gain.”
Consequently, the plaintiff felt compelled to “explain her weight gain and disclose intimate personal details about her life in order to keep her job.”
The complaint also contains numerous allegations suggesting that the plaintiffs were victims of racial and religious discrimination by Lizzo’s employees.
One such allegation accuses an accountant from BGBT’s mainly White management team of discriminating against the Black dancers, chastising them for what was supposedly “unacceptable and disrespectful” conduct during the tour.
The lawsuit posits that these remarks were underpinned by “racial and fat-phobic animus.”
Notably, Lizzo has a reputation for promoting body positivity and positive affirmation as core elements of her career.