More than 50 former World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) wrestlers brought a suit against their former employer, claiming the WWE hid the risk of brain trauma and failed to provide wrestlers with necessary medical support.
The suit alleges that the WWE not only knew of the problem with brain injuries and failed to address it, but even went as far as to cover-up the risks, according to an article from The Verge Monday.
“WWE placed corporate gain over its wrestlers’ health, safety, and financial security, choosing to leave the plaintiffs severely injured and with no recourse to treat their damaged minds and bodies,” the complaint states.
Some of the names attached to the suit read like a WWE hall of fame. Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka, “Mr. Wonderful,” King Kong Bundy and the “Road Warrior Animal” are among some of the names listed in the suit.
“This is another ridiculous attempt by the same attorney who has previously filed class action lawsuits against WWE, both of which have been dismissed,” the WWE said in a statement. “A federal judge has already found that this lawyer made patently false allegations about WWE, and this is more of the same.”
The WWE previously face a class-action suit in March that was dismissed by a federal judge. The judge hearing that case, Vanessa Bryant, had some harsh words for the plaintiffs.
Bryant notes that the three complaints filed were “replete with theoretical allegations of conditions from which a hypothetical person could suffer without alleging that any particular Plaintiff actually suffers from such a condition which has been causally connected by an expert to such Plaintiff’s performance at WWE events.”
Another section of the suit claims that since the wrestlers are hired as independent contractors, the WWE was able to skirt its responsibility to offer them medical treatment. The suit is asking for monetary compensation as well as improved monitoring of wrestlers moving forward, to better diagnose and treat concussions.
One part of the March ruling may also have an impact on the current suit. Bryant alludes to the wrestlers not only knowing about the dangers of the job, but were also compensated for it.
“Plaintiffs were professional wrestlers who were financially compensated to engage in an activity in which physical violence was a known and even purposeful part of the activity,” Bryant wrote in her ruling. “They were injured by other participants in… a “scripted” performance and thus in a manner that the plaintiff knew or should have reasonably anticipated.”
Similarity, the National Football League was recently ordered to pay more than $1 billion to former players suffering from issues related to concussions.
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