Lizzo Refutes ‘Outrageous’ Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Allegations: ‘I Am Not the Villain’

 “These last few days have been gut-wrenchingly difficult and overwhelmingly disappointing,” the singer said of the lawsuit against her

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Lizzo has broken her days-long silence on allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination that arose earlier this week, roundly denying the “sensationalized” stories that resulted from a lawsuit by three former dancers who accused the “Truth Hurts” singer of sexual harassment and creating a hostile workplace.

 “These last few days have been gut wrenchingly difficult and overwhelmingly disappointing. My work ethic, morals and respectfulness have been questioned. My character has been criticized,” Lizzo wrote in a statement on her Instagram. “Usually I choose not to respond to false allegations but these are as unbelievable as they sound and too outrageous to not be addressed. These sensationalized stories are coming from former employees who have already publicly admitted that they were told their behavior on tour was inappropriate and unprofessional.”

The Grammy-winning artist said she takes her work seriously and values high standards, but maintained that her intention has never been to make anyone uncomfortable.

“As an artist I have always been very passionate about what I do. I take my music and my performances seriously because at the end of the day I only want to put out the best art that represents me and my fans,” she said. “With passion comes hard work and high standards. Sometimes I have to make hard decisions but it’s never been my intention to make anyone feel uncomfortable or like they aren’t valued as an important part of the team.”

Lizzo went on to say she’s “not the villain” and thanked those who reached out in support.

“I am not here to be looked at as a victim, but I also know that I am not the villain that people and the media have portrayed me to be these last few days. I am very open with my sexuality and expressing myself but I cannot accept or allow people to use that openness to make me out to be something I am not. There is nothing I take more seriously than the respect we deserve as women in the world. I know what it feels like to be body shamed on a daily basis and would absolutely never criticize or terminate an employee because of their weight. I’m hurt but I will not let the good work I’ve done in the world be overshadowed by this. I want to thank everyone who has reached out in support to lift me up during this difficult time.”

The accusations in the lawsuit filed by Arianna Davis, Crystal Williams and Noelle Rodriguez include instances of sexual harassment, racial and religious harassment, false imprisonment, and interference with potential economic advantage. 

In response to Lizzo’s statement, Los Angeles attorney Ron Zambrano, who is representing plaintiffs Arianna Davis, Crystal Williams and Noelle Rodriguez, released the following statement:

“Lizzo has failed her own brand and has let down her fans. Her denial of this reprehensible behavior only adds to our clients’ emotional distress. The dismissive comments and utter lack of empathy are quite telling about her character and only serve to minimize the trauma she has caused the plaintiffs and other employees who have now come forward sharing their own negative experiences. While Lizzo notes it was never her intention ‘to make anyone feel uncomfortable,’ that is exactly what she did to the point of demoralizing her dancers and flagrantly violating the law.”

On Wednesday, Oscar-winning director Sophia Nahli Allison said that in 2019 she walked off a documentary about Lizzo after two weeks.

“I was treated with such disrespect by her. I witnessed how arrogant and unkind she is. I was not protected and was thrown into a shitty situation with little support. My spirit said to run as fast as you fucking can and I’m so grateful I trusted by gut. I felt gaslit and was deeply hurt but I’ve healed,” Allison continued.