Earlier this week, a very disturbing report was released about the Dallas Mavericks. The report, written by Jon Wertheim and Jessica Luther of Sports Illustrated, documented a long history and culture of sexual harassment within the Mavericks organization.
The article is both a must-read, and a painful read. Seeing the culture that the franchise has employed is disturbing and angering, but also important to know about.
While it remains to be seen what the league will do to punish the team, owner Mark Cuban, and president and CEO Terdema Ussery (who is accused of numerous counts of sexual harassment in the report), Adam Silver made a quick move to increase workplace safety.
The NBA commissioner sent a memo to all 30 teams and their employees, announcing that a confidential league-wide hotline will be in place shortly. Employees of all teams can use the hotline to report unsafe or worrisome workplace practices, including sexual harassment.
The NBA is launching a confidential hotline to report workplace issues, including sexual harassment, according to a memo commissioner Adam SIlver sent to the 30 teams minutes ago.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 22, 2018
Silver sent a memo to teams titled "Respect in the Workplace," and reaffirmed the league's commitment to "a safe and inclusive work environment," according to memo obtained by ESPN. The hotline will be available to all league and team employees. It'll be up and running next week.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 23, 2018
In addition to the confidential hotline, the league outlined required team policies, which teams will have to implement within the next few weeks.
All 30 NBA teams have been asked in memo from commissioner Adam Silver to complete review of updated respect in the workplace policy — and assess or adopt other team policies in work place — by March 6.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) February 23, 2018
The league acting swiftly to protect its workers is a good sign, but this needs to be the first of dozens of steps. That the Mavericks’ scandal existed for so long before anything happened is entirely inexcusable, and the NBA needs to take every measure necessary to ensure that it never happens again, and that all employees are safe, respected, and treated fairly.