Two transgender Netflix employees brought labor charges against the company, claiming they were retaliated against after raising concerns about Dave Chappelle’s controversial comedy special streaming online.

B. Pagels-Minor and Terra Field are filing unfair labor practice charges, with the National Labor Relations Board, against Netflix. They claim that Netflix tried to prevent employees from speaking out about working conditions, and Netflix’s commitment towards creating a safe environment.  

Pagels-Minor, a program manager, was fired for allegedly leaking the multi-million dollar salary Chappelle earned for The Closer. Field, a software engineer, was one of three employees who was suspended for attempting to join a director-level meeting. Both are transgender.

Pagels Minor, a black transgender individual, denied that they shared confidential information that Netflix paid $24.1 Million for The Closer. Field was reinstated to her position after she confirmed that there was no ill-intent for her attending the QBR Meeting.  

Chappelle’s jokes in The Closer have caused controversy. He asserts that ‘gender’ is a fact and criticizes the trans community for being thin-skinned.   

B. Pagels-Minor (left) and Terra Field (right), who are both transgender, are filing unfair labor practice charges against Netflix

B. Pagels-Minor (left) and Terra Field (right), who are both transgender, are filing unfair labor practice charges against Netflix

B. Pagels -Minor (left), and Terra Field (right), both transgender people, have filed unfair labor practice charges against Netflix. They claim that Netflix retaliated against their criticism of Dave Chappelle’s controversial comedy special The Closer.

Chappelle continues to face backlash over the controversial contents of his latest Netflix special which critics say were transphobic

Chappelle continues to be criticized for the controversial content of his Netflix special, which critics claim was transphobic.

Netflix has continued to stand by Chappelle and his comedy special which was released on the streaming platform October 5

Netflix has stood by Chappelle’s comedy special, which was released on the streaming platform Oct 5th.

This charge is not about Terra and B., and it’s also not about Dave. It’s about trying change the culture and having an effect for others,’ Laurie Burgess, attorney, told The Verge.

“The charge is all in collective action. It’s about supporting your coworkers, and speaking up about things you care about. 

Pagels–Minor and Field filed the complaint with the NLRB. They will investigate the allegations and determine if a settlement or complaint can be obtained. 

After a settlement is reached, both parties can be repaid with backpay. The company will have to post a notice stating that workers are allowed to engage on protected activities. 

Both of these outcomes are extremely important. 

Pagels-Minor is 35 weeks pregnant and lost their health insurance when they was  fired.

“Amidst all the stress I am trying to focus on my own health and take each day as it comes,’ they said. 

“As a high risk pregnancy, I must be careful. We don’t even know what our insurance situation is. We are expected to be in hospital to have a baby in less that 30 days.

Field applied for medical leave after being threatened with death and doxxing.

 ‘This is what happens with trans people — we’re tolerated as long as we’re quiet, but if we speak up we get harassed,’ she said. 

“It’s been a stressful few weeks but I will continue fighting for my community.” 



Field publicly criticized The Closer via Twitter, publishing a 40-tweet-long thread last Thursday explaining the harm comments in the special would cause to the trans community.

She also included a list that included 38 trans and nonbinary women and men of color who she claimed had been killed. In each case, she added that the victim ‘isn’t offended’ 

Field posted last week on Twitter that Dave Chappelle was being attacked not because of his offensive comments, but for the harm they do trans women, especially black women.

Pagels Minor, a black transgender person, stated that they were not behind the leak but that they did confirm that they were pushing to ‘change’ at their company after sharing ‘Black Trans Lives Matter’content with executives. 

“I shared my story last year with Netflix content executives as part of a conversation about facilitating more trans content on the platform. I wasn’t the only one. Pagels Minor, who became a transsexual in 2014 after meeting his now-wife, said that her colleagues remained professional while sharing their stories.

“We asked to see ourselves as equals. We asked them to acknowledge our stories and to believe that we are worthy of a place on this platform. Although we felt vulnerable, they were able to hear us.

Pagels-Minor stated that the company did no consult with the Trans Employee Resource Group before releasing Chappelle’s special, which they described as dangerous.

Netflix employees staged a walk out on October 20 to protest Chappelle's comedy special

Netflix employees staged an occupation on October 20 in protest of Chappelle’s comedy special

Activists gathered outside the company's offices on October 20 in support of the transgender community

On October 20, activists gathered in support for the transgender community outside the company offices 

‘The release of Chappelle’s special, ‘The Closer,’ happened without consulting the Trans* Employee Resource Group (ERG), of which I was a member and co-leader.’

‘The ERG might have recommended not releasing the special — but that if that wasn’t an option, we could have offered other ways to minimize the harm it could do to our community and to the company.’

They said, “But Netflix did not ask for guidance, deeply miscalculating its impact of this inflammatory and inaccurately dangerous content.”

Pagels-Minor had earlier this month organized an employee walkout at the Sunset Boulevard building of the company in protest against the comedian’s controversial content. They were fired by the company by 7pm that evening. 

They also pointed out the unplanned release of Chappelle’s Netflix special during LGBTQ+ history month, one day before Matthew Shepard’s anniversary.

“The ERG could have suggested that special be not released in October during LGBTQ+ history month. 

“Perhaps they could not have done it on October 5, which is the day before the anniversary of Matthew Shepard’s brutal death at University of Wyoming. Matthew Shepard was beaten and tortured to death near Laramie, on the night of October 6, 1998.

According to his contract with Netflix, The Closer was the third special Chappelle would produce for the streaming service. The Closer has received 96 per cent positive reviews from Rotten Tomatoes viewers, but only 43% from woke critics. 

Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings said to staff that the company was on the right side history’ and would continue to stream and promote Dave Chappelle’s controversial comedy special The Closer.

A leaked transcript of an internal Netflix message board shows that employees had disagreements about Chappelle’s controversial comedy special.

As he defended Chappelle, Hastings said to employees that he is ‘a unique speaker’. He also defended the comedian who was under fire for his defense J.K. Rowling’s book and for making transphobic jokes.

Transgender employees were so upset at Netflix’s stance on ‘The Closer’ that they joined Pagels Minor in a staged walkout Wednesday.

Hastings answered a question by an employee about whether the company was making the wrong historical choices regarding hate speech on an internal message board.

According to The New York Times: “I believe that our commitment towards artistic expressions and pleasing our members are the right long-term decision for Netflix. We are on the right side, however, time will tell.”

Netflix's co-chief executive Reed Hastings defended the platform's decision to continue streaming The Closer saying the company was 'on the right side of history'

Netflix’s cochief executive Reed Hastings said that Netflix was on the right side and made the decision to stream The Closer.

Netflix's other co-chief executive, Ted Sarandos, has also defended the special noting the trans community's concerns while insisting 'that content on screen doesn't directly translate to real-world harm'

 Netflix’s other co-chief executive, Ted Sarandos, has also defended the special noting the trans community’s concerns while insisting ‘that content on screen doesn’t directly translate to real-world harm’

He also noted that Chappelle is very popular with viewers, citing the “stickiness” of his latest special. 

Hastings wrote, “The core strategy is always to please our members.”

“In stand up comedy, comedians do many outrageous things to make a point. Some people enjoy the art form, or particular comedians, while others don’t.

Another employee claimed that the comedian had a history homophobia and bigotry.

Hastings responded: “We disagree with your character and we’ll continue working with Dave Chappelle in future.

“We see him as a unique voice but can understand if others don’t want to watch his show.”

He said, “We don’t see Dave Chappelle being harmful, or in any need of any offset. Which we clearly and respectfully disagree on.”

Hannah Gadsby calls out Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos for defending Dave Chappelle

Sarandos was a comedian and lesbian from Australia.

‘Hey Ted Sarandos! Just a quick note to let you know that I would prefer if you didn’t drag my name into your mess. 

Now I have to deal with even more of the hate and anger that Dave Chappelle’s fans like to unleash on me every time Dave gets 20 million dollars to process his emotionally stunted partial world view. 

You didn’t pay me nearly enough to deal with the real world consequences of the hate speech dog whistling you refuse to acknowledge, Ted. 

F**k you and your amoral algorithm cult…

I do s**ts with more back bone than you. It’s a joke!

You just said there was one.  

This is because Ted Sarandos, Hastings’ co-chief executives, was dragged along by Hannah Gadsby (an Australian lesbian comedian), after he used her comedy shows as examples of the streaming site’s efforts to be inclusive. 

Sarandos said that Netflix ‘was working hard to ensure marginalized communities aren’t defined by a single story’ specifically noting ‘we have Sex Education, Orange Is the New Black, Control Z, Hannah Gadsby and Dave Chappelle all on Netflix. This is possible by increasing diversity within the content team.

Gadsby has two comedy specials on Netflix. She rose to fame after her first special Nanette, which was streaming on Netflix in 2018, became available.

She asked Sarandos to not ‘drag’ her on Instagram [her]Name into [his]Mess.

‘F**k you and your amoral algorithm cult…’ she wrote.

Sarandos addressed employees anger over Netflix’s decision of streaming The Closer via a company-wide email.

Sarandos sent the email to Variety, stating that he knew that many of you were disappointed, upset, and hurt by our decision.

“With “The Closer,” it is understood that the concern isn’t about offensive-to some content but titles which could lead to real world harm (such a further marginalization of already marginalized groups, hatred, violence, etc.).

“Last year, similar concerns were raised about 365 Days and violence against females. While some employees might disagree, we are firm believers that screen content doesn’t directly translate into real-world harm.