Wynn Resorts, The Wing, Cosmo and Walmart: The Broadsheet March 28
Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Walmart stops carrying Cosmo in checkout lanes, more ugly details about Wynn Resorts surface, and we ponder whether the existence of a women-only club can be sexist. Enjoy your Wednesday.
• No Wynners here. The latest round of Wall Street Journal reporting on the experiences of women who worked at Steve Wynn's casino businesses is a harrowing reminder of one of the most important truths to emerge from the #MeToo movement: predators do not act alone.
The WSJ reporters spoke to "dozens" of former Wynn employees, who "paint a consistent picture of life at Wynn properties, and of the managers Mr. Wynn hired and promoted. Complaints were often dismissed or ignored. Supervisors sometimes looked the other way when Mr. Wynn asked for the private company of workers."
As a refresher on what exactly those managers were ignoring: Wynn is alleged to have forced employees to perform sex acts, in addition to being a "chronic" sexual harasser. As a result of the accusations, he has resigned as CEO and sold his entire stake in the business. But even after Wynn's departure, many of the managers and executives named in this article still work for the company.
The stories of the former employees, many of whom bravely came forward to share their experiences on the record, are horrifying. The fact that so many of them went to their supervisor in hopes of finding protection, only to be ignored, or even threatened or fired, is heartbreaking—and unacceptable. I look forward to reading the WSJ's ongoing reporting on Wynn Resorts and to watching how the company chooses to handle the futures of those managers still in its employ. WSJ
ALSO IN THE HEADLINES
• Taking wing. The New York Human Rights Commission is inquiring into The Wing, the women-only club and co-working space led by CEO Audrey Gelman. Although the reason behind the inquiry is unclear, Jezebel reports that the discussion is likely centered around how anti-gender discrimination laws apply to The Wing. The lawyer representing The Wing pushed back on the notion that it's a formal investigation, saying, "Anti-discrimination laws were passed to empower women and make sure they thrive in a world where the playing field has been tilted against them, which is precisely what The Wing does." Fortune
• Pill parity? Fortune's Sy Mukherjee digs into the latest on the male birth control pill and the ways that "scientific and social health policy discussions can be influenced by sex and gender." Noting the many questions that have come up about the viability of the male pill—and the rise of apps that help women in “contraception deserts” get access to the female pill—Sy concludes: "Preliminary, unproven birth control innovations for men are already facing pushback over possible physical and social effects, while proven ones for women (with long-evident physical and social effects) are, in some places, difficult enough to acquire that entirely new kinds of technologies have to be used to get them at all." Fortune
• Celebrating strength. Refinery29 marked Muslim Women's Day (March 27th) by partnering with photojournalist Tanya Habjouqa to publish this striking group of photos of mini biographies of Muslim Women. Refinery29
• Cosmo's not the cause. Walmart says it will remove Cosmopolitan from checkout lines at 5,000 stores. The group that pushed for the magazine's removal praised the move for sparing shoppers from "this graphic and often degrading and offensive material," which it says "does make a difference, especially in this Me Too culture that we're living in." Hmm. While Cosmo certainly covers sex—and while that coverage might not be everyone's bag—I fail to see how that relates to the epidemic of powerful men sexually harassing women. And frankly, I'm surprised to see USA Today let that correlation go unchallenged. USA Today
MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Tanzina Vega has been named the new host of public radio's “The Takeaway.” She succeeds John Hockenberry, who retired in August and was subsequently accused of engaging in sexual harassment and bullying behavior during his time on the show.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
• Taking a ride to the bank. Uber will pay $10 million to settle a discrimination and hostile workplace class action lawsuit filed last year on behalf of 420 women and minority engineers. Fortune
• Reading into it. As the #MeToo movement rocks the publishing world—with harassment scandals now dogging best-selling children’s book authors, prominent political journalists, and a National Book Award-winning novelist—publishers are struggling to respond. Some have moved swiftly to cancel book deals or expand "morals clauses" in their contracts, while other have taken no action at all. New York Times
• Sexism by the spoonful. This quirky and fascinating piece by the NYT's Kim Severson explains why the humble egg spoon (which is pretty much exactly what you'd expect it to be: a spoon used to cook an egg over an open flame) is suddenly in the midst of the debate around sexism in the culinary world. New York Times
• Two more! Two major law firms, Orrick and Munger, Tolles & Olson, have joined the growing list of businesses that will no longer require employees to sign binding arbitration agreements. As we've noted before, such agreements have played a significant role in keeping sexual harassment cases out of the public eye. Houston Chronicle
ON MY RADAR
A former Michigan State University dean allegedly had a video of Larry Nassar "treating" a young female patient Buzzfeed
Roseanne Connor has become a Trump supporter. Just like her creator New York Times
Why the new sex-trafficking law is a promising, but limited, first step Fortune