NFL Will Pay Super Bowl Volunteers For First Time In Wake Of Lawsuit Against MLB
The NFL has "been forced to adjust how it handles its Super Bowl volunteer program as a result of a class-action lawsuit brought against" MLB in July for "not paying volunteers at the All-Star FanFest at the Javits Center," according to Gary Myers of the N.Y. DAILY NEWS. The Super Bowl host committee in previous years has "supplied all the volunteers on a non-paid basis for Super Bowl week, which would include the greeters at the airports and train stations and on the streets as well as the volunteers who worked specific NFL events." As a result of the lawsuit against the MLB, "which has not been settled," the NFL for Super Bowl XLVIII "has elected to hire its own 1,500 workers to help out at events and pay them." The NFL "was advised by its attorneys, as a result of the MLB lawsuit, to pay those who previously did the job for free." N.Y./N.J. Super Bowl Host Committee President & CEO Al Kelly said the committee is hiring 11,000-12,000 volunteers for community projects, but those people will not be paid and will have to sign a waiver "that among other things says they won’t join a class-action suit asking to be paid." He added, "We believe volunteerism is the heart of what makes America great." Kelly said that as the hiring process starts, "about 2,000 volunteers have already signed the waiver." Fifteen thousand volunteers will ultimately "be hired and thus far there is no indication the waiver will be an issue or prevent the committee from reaching its goal" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 11/17).
GOOD VIBRATIONS: In Newark, Ted Sherman in a front-page piece wrote New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority President & CEO Wayne Hasenbalg for the past two years "has been overseeing the state's readiness" for Super Bowl XLVIII -- "to make sure the trains run, the power flows, the roads around the stadium stay open and visitors leave with a good feeling about Jersey by the time it’s over" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 11/16).