Sexual assault scandals in the #MeToo era
This case inspired the #MeToo movement where sexual assault victims from all over the world have come forward with their experiences, thus uncovering more cases, specially related to institutions with a high reputation, just like Weinstein’s film production company. The list below illustrates some of the ones that have faced consequences, ranging from all aspects of public life.
1. The Weinstein Company
The company filed for bankruptcy on 19 March following dozens of allegations against Harvey Weinstein accusing him of sexual harassment, assault and rape. He is currently under investigation in both the US and the UK.
The British charity is assumed to have hidden sexual abuse allegations against staff from victims of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. The scandal highlighted the fact that big charities are increasingly more worried about branding and earnings than their actual mission.
3. Swedish Academy/Nobel Foundation
The Swedish Academy will not be awarding the Nobel Prize in Literature for 2018 following allegations of sexual harassment against Jean-Claude Arnault, who has close ties with the Academy. It is the first time since World War II that the price is being withheld.
4. US Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
The US Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has expelled Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski, along with Mr. Weinstein (last year). Cosby was convicted of sexual assault last month and Polanski has admitted statutory rape of a 13-year old girl in 1977.
5. Pamplona’s San Fermin Festival
A Spanish court cleared five men, known as the ‘wolf pack’, of the gang rape of a teenager at the San Fermin bull-running festival in Pamplona in 2016. They were convicted on 26 April of sexual abuse, a much lesser crime. Protests have taken over the country following the decision.
Cardinal George Pell is facing sexual assault charges in Australia. This is part of the long-established sex abuse scandal in the church, making Pell the highest-ranking Vatican official to be charged.