Attorneys for Asha Daniels filed her suit on Thursday (September 21) in Los Angeles County Superior Court. Speaking with NBC News, she said working for Lizzo “made her feel like I was living in a madhouse.” The source of Daniels's allegations is Lizzo’s wardrobe manager, Amanda Nomura: according to the complaint, Normura would refer to performers as “fat,” “useless” and “dumb,” injured Daniels with a clothing rack, and forced Lizzo's dancers to change in front of leering production crew members. In her suit, Daniels claims she was fired after raising concerns.
The charges Daniels is suing for include "racial and sexual harassment, disability discrimination, illegal retaliatory termination and assault," according to a press release. “I was listening to this Black woman on this huge stage have this message of self-love and caring for others and being empathetic and being strong and standing up for others,” Daniels said. “And I was witnessing myself, the dancers and the background vocalists, and my local team in every city be harassed and bullied regularly.”
Stefan Friedman, a spokesperson for Lizzo, denied the allegations and targeted Daniels’s attorney, Ron Zambrano. “As Lizzo receives a Humanitarian Award tonight from the Black Music Action Coalition for the incredible charitable work she has done to lift up all people, an ambulance-chasing lawyer tries to sully this honor by recruiting someone to file a bogus, absurd publicity-stunt lawsuit who, wait for it, never actually met or even spoke with Lizzo. We will pay this as much attention as it deserves. None.”
The new lawsuit joins one filed in early August, where three former Lizzo backup dancers claimed to have experienced sexual harassment, discrimination, and other features of a hostile work environment. Lizzo denied the allegations, calling them “as unbelievable as they sound.”
The FADER has reached out to Freidman and Zambrano for more information.