Hawks face lawsuit.
The Atlanta Hawks are being sued by a former Security Operations Manager for allegedly treating celebrities and security protocols differently based on race.
According to Fox 5 Atlanta, Samuel R. Hayes not only claims that the Hawks’ security protocol was enforced differently for black celebrities, but also says he was fired for being black himself.
The lawsuit states celebrities like Drake, Future, Kanye West, 2 Chainz, Kat Williams, Migos, Tyler Perry and others were denied requests to bypass security, while others such as AC/DC, Amy Schumer, Adele, Bon Jovi and Ariana Grande were allowed to bypass security, according to the lawsuit.
The lawsuit also states, according to Fox 5 Atlanta,
"Staff members observed that Parker and Security Systems Manager Megan Lodestro (who is white) demanded “extra tight security” at black shows, and denied black entertainers the same security privileges they granted to white entertainers. Staff members complained that these inconsistencies were racially motivated and caused confusion."
Additionally, Hayes makes claims against Jason Parker, the Vice President of Customer Service and Operations for the Atlanta Hawks, who reportedly told Hayes that the difference in security measures was due to, “hip hop acts draw a different crowd, and the white acts bring in more money.”
Hayes claims Parker’s decision to fire him was based on "race, including racial stereotypes, myths, assumptions, and preconceived notions of black people as “angry” and “aggressive.”"
The team has vehemently denied these allegations.
Lawsuit: Atlanta Hawks treated black celebrities and certain crowds differentlyhttps://t.co/uS7swXdEAe— FOX 5 Atlanta (@FOX5Atlanta) July 6, 2017