Girl power. After The New York Times detailed decades of sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein in October, dozens of women have released statements or taken to social media to address the sexual harassment issue in Hollywood or share their own experiences with abuse.
Scroll through below to read some of the most powerful statements about sexual misconduct made by women in 2017.
Rose McGowan has been very vocal about her alleged experiences with Weinstein, opening up about her trauma to the New York Times, on social media and at the Women’s Convention in Detroit.
“I have been silenced for 20 years. I have been slut-shamed. I have been harassed. I have been maligned and you know what? I’m just like you,” McGowan told the audience at the Women’s Convention on October 27. “What happened to me behind the scenes happens to all of us in society and it cannot stand and it will not stand.”
“The triggering has been insane,” she continued. “The monster’s face has been everywhere, my nightmare.”
Olivia Munn revealed her alleged experiences with director Brett Ratner on the set of 2004’s After the Sunset and how she felt running into him at a party in 2010.
“It feels as if I keep going up against the same bully at school who just won’t quit,” Munn wrote in her November 1 Los Angeles Times piece. “You just hope that enough people believe the truth and for enough time to pass so that you can’t be connected to him anymore.”
Munn also explained how an attorney dissuading her from going after the director, affected her. “That did leave an impact on me,” she wrote. “How broken do women have to be before people listen?”
Three-time Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman opened up about being sexually abused by former Olympic doctor Larry Nassar in an article for the Players’ Tribune.
“I also want people to understand that abuse is never O.K. One person is too many and one time is too often. We must protect the survivors and people who are suffering in silence,” Raisman wrote on December 7. “We must support those who come forward, whether it is today, tomorrow, in three months, one year from now, 10 years from now. Whenever it is, everyone must show support. Victim shaming must stop. There are those who ask tough questions. Why didn’t you speak up? Why are you just speaking now? Are you nervous this will define you? To them I ask that they consider how complicated it is to deal with abuse. Abusers are often master manipulators and make their survivors feel confused and guilty for thinking badly of their abusers. And the abusers also often make everyone around them stand up for them, leaving the survivor afraid that no one will believe them. That needs to stop. Those who look the other way must stop and help protect those being hurt. Abusers must never be protected.”
“The power needs to shift to the survivors,” she continued. Sexual abuse isn’t just in the moment. It is forever. Healing is forever.”
The Cast and Crew of One Tree Hill
After writer Audrey Wauchope spoke out on November 11 via Twitter about her experience with OTH showrunner Mark Schwahn, the cast and crew of the teen drama, which ran from 2003 to 2012, wrote a letter published by Variety on November 13 about their alleged experiences with Schwahn.
“Mark Schwahn’s behavior over the duration of the filming of One Tree Hill was something of an ‘open secret,’” Sophia Bush, Hilarie Burton, Bethany Joy Lenz and company wrote in their letter. “Many of us were, to varying degrees, manipulated psychologically and emotionally. More than one of us is still in treatment for post-traumatic stress. Many of us were put in uncomfortable positions and had to swiftly learn to fight back, sometimes physically, because it was made clear to us that the supervisors in the room were not the protectors they were supposed to be. Many of us were spoken to in ways that ran the spectrum from deeply upsetting, to traumatizing, to downright illegal. And a few of us were put in positions where we felt physically unsafe. More than one woman on our show had her career trajectory threatened.”
“Many of us since have stayed silent publicly but had very open channels of communication in our friend group and in our industry, because we want Tree Hill to remain the place ‘where everything’s better and everything’s safe’ for our fans; some of whom have said that the show quite literally saved their lives,” the letter continued. “But the reality is, no space is safe when it has an underlying and infectious cancer. We have worked at taking our power back, making the conventions our own, and relishing in the good memories. But there is more work to be done.”
Lupita Nyong’o detailed her alleged encounter with Weinstein to the NYT, and then offered a message of hope for his fellow victims.
“I hope we are in a pivotal moment where a sisterhood — and brotherhood of allies — is being formed in our industry,” Nyong’o wrote on October 19. “I hope we can form a community where a woman can speak up about abuse and not suffer another abuse by not being believed and instead being ridiculed. That’s why we don’t speak up — for fear of suffering twice, and for fear of being labeled and characterized by our moment of powerlessness. Though we may have endured powerlessness at the hands of Harvey Weinstein, by speaking up, speaking out and speaking together, we regain that power. And we hopefully ensure that this kind of rampant predatory behavior as an accepted feature of our industry dies here and now.”
Kate Winslet spoke out about Weinstein and offered support for victims on October 9.
“The fact that these women are starting to speak out about the gross misconduct of one of our most important and well regarded film producers is incredibly brave and has been deeply shocking to hear. The way Harvey Weinstein has treated these vulnerable, talented young women is NOT the way women should ever EVER deem to be acceptable or commonplace in ANY workplace,” the Oscar winner said in her statement.
“I have no doubt that for these women this time has been, and continues to be extremely traumatic,” she continued. “I fully embrace and salute their profound courage, and I unequivocally support this level of very necessary exposure of someone who has behaved in reprehensible and disgusting ways. His behavior is without question disgraceful and appalling and very, very wrong. I had hoped that these kind of stories were just made up rumors, maybe we have all been naïve. And it makes me so angry. There must be ‘no tolerance’ of this degrading, vile treatment of women in ANY workplace anywhere in the world, maybe we have all been naïve. And it makes me so angry. There must be ‘no tolerance’ of this degrading, vile treatment of women in ANY workplace anywhere in the world.”
A former employee of the Weinstein Company, Lauren O’Connor, spoke to the New York Times for their October exposé.
“I am a 28-year-old woman trying to make a living and a career. Harvey Weinstein is a 64-year-old, world famous man and this is his company,” O’Connor said. “The balance of power is me: 0, Harvey Weinstein: 10.”
Claire Forlani recalled of her alleged interactions with Weinstein in a lengthy statement on Twitter on October 12.
“You see, nothing happened to me with Harvey — by that I mean, I escaped 5 times,” Hawaii Five-0 actress wrote. “I had two Peninsula Hotel meetings in the evening with Harvey and all I remember was I ducked, dived and ultimately got out of there without getting slobbered over, well just a bit. Yes, massage was suggested. The three dinners with Harvey I don’t really remember the time period, I was 25. I remember him telling me all the actresses who had slept with him and what he had done for them.”
She added: “I am feeling very moved that these brave women who came forward are creating alchemy of all bad, brutal ugliness. That maybe now a safe and respectful work environment for the generation coming up will happen. I feel excited, I really do, that this could be a thing of the past, that these men will now not feel they have carte blanche to intimidate, sexualize, bully and ultimately hurt women or girls.”
Supergirl’s leading lady, Melissa Benoist, responded to Supergirl and The Flash co-showrunner and Arrow and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow executive producer, Andrew Kreisberg, being accused of sexual harassment on November 13.
“I am a woman who leads a show that supports equality and feminism, empowerment, and fighting for what is right. I have always tried to conduct myself this way personally, as well. Sadly, the show and my career are a part of an industry that doesn’t always mirror these sentiments,” the statement read. “This is heartbreaking, and at times makes me feel helpless. I know I’m not the only one who feels this way. But I’m an optimist. I believe lasting change is possible, and when people are mistreated, they should have a safe forum to speak their truth and always be heard. And when people commit crimes or harass others, they should always be held accountable — no matter what industry they work in or how much power they wield. I’ve spoken up about it in the past — publicly and not so publicly — and I’ll continue to do so. All of us should, without fear or shame.”
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