Articles Posted in #Metoo

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By Bobbie Mae James

After the Me Too Movement was catapulted into public awareness in 2017 amid sexual assault and harassment allegations by female celebrities, sexual harassment has become an immediate, serious concern in both our personal and work lives.

In June 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission released a report detailing the study of harassment in the workplace.  The results were shocking.  In 2015, the EEOC received over 28,000 harassment claims for both private and public employers.  A majority of this 45% were sex-based claims, and the majority of these claims were due to sexual harassment.  The report also stated that at least 25% of women experience sexual harassment in the workplace, meaning one in four women.  Furthermore, between 87% and 94% of employees who experience sexual harassment do not file a formal complaint.  This is not surprising in the least, because it was also reported that 75% of people who reported workplace mistreatment faced some form of retaliation.

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By Walker G. Harman, Jr.

Contrary to popular belief, the Me Too movement is not so new.  Beginning nearly 15 years ago, it was established to “help survivors of sexual violence, particularly Black women and girls, and other young women of color from low wealth communities, find pathways to healing.”  The original founders had a vision to address both the “dearth in resources” for survivors of sexual  violence” (emphasis added) and to “build a community” of advocates, politicians, lawyers, social workers and others to develop a grassroots approach to addressing and redressing sexual violence at its core.

Now, over a decade later, with many celebrities spear-heading the movement, thousands upon thousands of woman (and even some men) have come forward to say Me Too.  So, what does Me Too actually mean?  It seems via popular sentiment that the utterance of  Me Too signifies that the speaker is also a survivor or a victim of sexual violence.  However, sexual violence is generally associated with illegal conduct (both civil and criminal), such as rape, molestation, offensive touching, sexual harassment, and other vile and abhorrent conduct.  That is, the underlying conduct with a claim of sexual violence is so intrusive and offensive, that it gave rise to criminal and/or civil liability.  Keeping with the movement’s original intent and to this day, the official organizers of the Me Too movement describe the purpose as “helping those who need it to find entry points for individual healing and galvanizing a broad base of survivors to disrupt the systems that allow for the global proliferation of sexual violence.”

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