A transgender actor has claimed that they were fired from the hit musical, "Hamilton," after requesting a gender-neutral dressing room.
Suni Reid, who is Black, nonbinary, and goes by the pronouns they/them, filed an official Equal Employment Opportunity Commission complaint claiming that they were "cast out of ‘Hamilton’ when the company's management refused to renew their contract shortly after they requested that performers have a gender-neutral dressing room in addition to the ones for men and women," according to Entertainment Weekly.
The complaint further alleges that Reid experienced "frequent incidents of discrimination and harassment" and was misgendered after primarily using the male dressing room.
In a statement, Reid's attorneys noted that, while "Hamilton" was a "beacon of diversity" and appears "committed to causes seeking social justice and harmony," things were different outside of the public eye.
"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," the statement read. "We look forward to upholding Mx. Reid's rights and hope this is a wake-up call for the theater industry about the systemic inequities that persist even at its greatest heights."
Reid joined "Hamilton" in 2017, playing several leading roles in the Los Angeles, Chicago, and Broadway productions. In June, they approached producers asking for a gender-neutral dressing room, which was later provided, but "the company still would not drop its retaliatory animus toward Mx. Reid and rescinded their contract renewal offer altogether," according to the complaint, which was cited by Pink News.
A "Hamilton" spokesperson has strongly denied the allegations brought forth by Reid, who they described as "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 spokesperson said. "We deny the allegations in the charge. 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."
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