Reporter Fired for Stripping Files Gender Discrimination Complaint
The former Houston Chronicle reporter who said she was fired for working as a stripper filed a federal gender discrimination complaint against the newspaper this week.
Sarah Tressler, 30, is asking the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to examine the Chronicle’s decision to let her go. She said an editor told her she was fired for failing to disclose her side job on her job application, MSNBC reported.
“I was very upset that I was fired because I had been told by many editors that I was doing a good job,” Tressler said in a statement. “There was no question on the form that covered my dancing. I answered the questions on the form honestly.”
Tressler, who is being represented by celebrity women’s rights lawyer Gloria Allred, said she “very rarely” did stripper work once she took the job at the Chronicle. She said stripping helped pay for college, and she only went back to it for exercise.
“And I didn’t have a gym membership. So, on days off I might just go in there in the afternoon and do a couple stage rotations and knock it out,” she said during a news conference in Los Angeles Thursday.
She only worked at the Chronicle for two months before another publication ran a story uncovering her “double life” under the headline, “Writer by day, stripper by night.” During that time she covered high society, general assignments, human interest stories, men’s and women’s fashion for the newspaper, CNN reported.
“Most exotic dancers are female, and therefore to terminate an employee because they had previously been an exotic dancer would have an adverse impact on women, since it is a female-dominated occupation,” Allred said.
The Houston Chronicle did not weigh in on Tressler’s charge, with a newspaper spokeswoman telling CNN Thursday, “We have not seen the complaint and thus cannot comment.”
Tressler said she has already found a new writing job in Houston, though declined to say where.
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