Sports Law • Risk Management

angela's blog

July 27, 2010: The Ruling: Cheerleading Not a Sport

In a much publicized Title IX suit, a federal judge ruled against Quinnipiac University. As part of the judge’s decision, the judge declared that cheerleading at Quinnipiac is not a sport. Thus, in its current state, cheerleading cannot be counted towards Title IX compliance at Quinnipiac.

As shocking as this ruling seems on its face, arguably this might not be a setback for women in athletics. Although the judge did not allow Quinnipiac to count cheerleading towards Title IX compliance, this in effect can offer more opportunities for women to participate in athletics.

July 20, 2010: Unpaid Internship Test

The U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division (“WHD”) in April 2010 published guidance for for-profit businesses who utilize unpaid interns. The fact sheet can be found at: http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs71.pdf.

To avoid infringing on the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) which imposes minimum wage laws for qualified employees, WHD has introduced a six part test to keep alive the integrity of internships. Factor one is that the internship must simulate an “educational environment” by incorporating training into the program. Essentially the business should not be in reliance on the intern’s productivity for its routine business, yet interns should learn new skills.

July 19, 2010: University Funded Athletics = Layoffs

University funded athletic programs, like that of the University of California, Berkeley, face budget cuts. While many state funded universities are undergoing furloughs and layoffs, its college athletic programs cannot hide from the axe.

July 16, 2010: Documented Workers

It is difficult to say just how many undocumented people currently live and work in the United States. But under the heavy scrutiny by politicians of the status of illegal immigrants, this is a reminder to employers to hire documented workers. Even hiring for short-term projects or hiring independent contractors, follow the letter of the law in your hiring practices and hold onto your employment records. No one knows what reform will take place to correct the situation of undocumented people within U.S.

July 15, 2010: Motherhood vs. Professional Athlete

How does a woman choose between being at the top of her game or in becoming a mom? One particular sport’s organization help mom’s do both. The L.P.G.A. Tour assists women golfers by providing complimentary day care during domestic events. By supporting moms, the tour can continue to attract the sport’s top athletes.

Sometimes, however, athlete sponsors put indirect pressure on female athletes to avoid pregnancy. Some sponsors impose contract clauses which require an athlete to maintain a certain level of success in athletic competition.

July 14, 2010: A Lesson From Wal-Mart in Crowd Control

Managing crowd control is a lesson that can be learned from Wal-Mart. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) imposed a modest fine against Wal-Mart following the customers’ trampling of its employee, which led to the employee’s death. Customers lined up outside of a New York based Wal-Mart in anticipation of an after Thanksgiving sale there. OSHA accuses Wal-Mart of failing to protect its employee from a situation that would likely cause such serious physical harm.