Attorneys General from six states sent a letter to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (pictured) Wednesday, saying they will investigate the league over multiple claims of workplace harassment and discrimination, if it doesn't do something to address the allegations. File Photo by Alex Butler/UPI
April 6 (UPI) -- Attorneys general from six U.S. states said Tuesday, they will investigate the National Football League over concerns about workplace harassment, particularly against women and minorities.
Offices from Massachusetts, New York, Illinois, Washington, Oregon and Minnesota sent a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, outlining their concerns over anti-discrimination laws that protect workers and saying they will use "the full weight of our authority" if the league doesn't address the issues.
"We all watched in horror in 2014 when the video of Ray Rice striking, knocking out, and spitting on his fiancé was made public. In the aftermath, you promised to take gender violence seriously and improve the institutional culture for women at the N.F.L.," the letter reads.
"These recent allegations suggest that you have not."
Specifically, the six are referring to allegations made by several former league employees.
"We write to express our grave concerns about the recent allegations in the New York Times by over thirty former employees of the National Football League, who described a workplace culture that is overtly hostile to women," the letter states.
It refers to several examples, including female employees being forced to watch the video of Rice attacking his fiancé.
"Anti-discrimination laws in many states, including New York, prohibit employers from subjecting domestic violence victims, as well as women and people of color, to a hostile work environment," it states.
Women have also described unwanted touching from male supervisors, parties where prostitutes were hired, being passed over for promotions based on their gender, and being pushed out for complaining about discrimination.
"All of this is entirely unacceptable and potentially unlawful. The N.F.L. must do better -- pink jerseys are not a replacement for equal treatment and full inclusion of women in the workplace. Our offices will use the full weight of our authority to investigate and prosecute allegations of harassment, discrimination, or retaliation by employers throughout our states, including at the National Football League," the letter reads.