Blog Entry

Yes Virginia, Men are allowed there....

Posted on: September 17, 2010 8:29 am
Edited on: September 17, 2010 8:33 am
There's a popular belief that while women are allowed in men's locker rooms, men aren't allowed in women's locker rooms.  It exists in the public, it exists on message boards, and shown by ESPN's Mike Golic on Mike and Mike in the morning.  When Golic responded to a question as to why men aren't allowed in the women's locker, he stated he didn't know, they just aren't.  Perhaps the inaccurate response may be the result of...ummm..lack of coverage in women's sports and the news process after that. assured, there is no double standard when it comes to women locker rooms.  The court ruling that granted a woman access to the Yankee’s clubhouse in 1978 and the subsequent changes that came in to place by the mid-80s by major sports organizations, also took away any barrier that existed in keeping male reporters out of women’s locker rooms.  No double standards here.  Women are aware that we can’t have our cake and eat it too. 

Indeed, male reporters are allowed in to women’s locker rooms during the mandated press period.  There’s a belief that while this is true, that it’s only after women are showered and dressed.  Incorrect.  Consider this, the NFL opens up the doors to the locker room after a 10 minute cooling down period.  Now I invite you to venture over to the Sparks website and check out their media policy.  Easy enough to be found, however, I’ll make it easy on you.

"Pre and Post Game Interviews
In accordance with WNBA policy, the Sparks and the visitors’ locker rooms will be open to members of the media for 30 minutes ending 1 hour before the start of the game (e.g., media access shall be granted from 5:30–6:00 P.M. for a 7:00pm game). Locker rooms are re-opened to the media after the game following a 10-minute cooling down period and will remain open for 30 minutes. Players and coaches are available for inter views at those times. Only working members of the press with valid credentials will be admitted to the locker rooms. Absolutely no autographs are allowed during media access."

Sparks Website

Think about it, the same time frame as to when the doors open for the NFL, also applies to the women.  No special advantage here, except maybe the time it takes to get out of the gear.  Still, ten minutes isn’t much time to go through the after game overview with the team, get showered and dressed.  If female reporters are allowed to enter during this time period, then the WNBA cannot keep male reporters out. 


Since: Sep 23, 2010
Posted on: September 23, 2010 10:33 pm

Yes Virginia, Men are allowed there....

Excellent series and insight on this topic.  You have analyzed the situation with logic and facts.  Much of the discussion has revolved around the reporters and the players, but I think ownership of the problem falls squarely on the sanctioning leagues.  Like you have written, if a league allows access to reporters of one sex it must legally admit equally credentialed reporters of the other sex as well.  The league is determining that the locker room is part of the work place when it allows media access.  Are not companies legally required to provide a work place free of sexual harassment?  Would not the league or teams be exposing themselves to a lawsuit from their players in that they are made to shower and dress in the company of the opposite sex?  I would think this would pass the test of what a reasonable person would consider workplace harassment.  Thoughts....

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