‘Hamilton’ actor claims they were fired after requesting gender-neutral dressing room
A non-binary former “Hamilton” performer on Wednesday filed a federal complaint against the Broadway show alleging discrimination based on gender identity.
Lawyers for actor Suni Reid filed the complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming they were retaliated against after requesting a gender-neutral dressing room in the Hollywood Pantages theater. Reid cited harassment taking place in male dressing rooms as the reason for the request.
“Unfortunately, during Mx. Reid’s years with the show, which purports to be an icon of diversity, they have experienced frequent incidents of discrimination and harassment from cast members and management of Hamilton based upon their race, sexual orientation/LGBTQ+ status, gender, and gender identity,” the complaint states. The “Hamilton” company “failed to act” when threats were made against Reid, it adds.
“This genderneutral dressing space would be usable by other members of the cast as well, not just Mx. Reid, and multiple other actors expressed interest in using a gender-neutral dressing room,” reads the complaint. The company agreed to cordon off a portion of the main dressing room using a curtain or sheet, but not to create separate dressing rooms entirely.
The production allegedly did not renew Reid’s contract after they brought the issue to light and demanded a solution.
“When Mx. Reid responded by letting the Company know that this was not an adequate solution (either in practical terms or under the law), management began looking for reasons to cut off its relationship with Mx. Reid,” the document states.
Reid left the show in September after four years as a cast member.
“Publicly, Hamilton is a beacon of diversity and appears committed to causes seeking social justice and harmony,” Reid’s attorneys Lawrence M. Pearson and Lindsay M. Goldbrum of Wigdor LLP said in a statement obtained by Deadline. “Behind the curtain, however, the Company’s management will force out a Black, transgender cast member simply because they stood up for themselves and advocated for a more equitable workplace, and therefore called that public image into question.”
In a statement to Deadline, a “Hamilton” spokesperson denied the accusations, calling Reid a “valued cast member for more than three years.”
“We offered them a contract to return to Hamilton with terms responsive to their requests,” the statement continued. “We have not discriminated or retaliated against Suni. Since the shutdown, our organization has taken care of our community. We have treated Suni with the same respect and consideration as all the company members of Hamilton. Specifically, we have given Suni direct financial support, paid for their health insurance, and paid for their housing. We wish Suni well in their future endeavors.”