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#MeToo campaign shines light on those sexually harassed or assaulted

October 16, 2017 2:56 PM
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#MeToo campaign shines light on those sexually harassed or assaulted

Over the past 24 hours, a social media campaign highlighting and empowering victims of sexual assault and abuse has taken over Twitter.

Actress Alyssa Milano was one of the first to share the call for a "me too" hashtag, writing, "If you’ve been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet."

She shared a note from a friend, which read, "If all the women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted wrote, 'Me too' as a status, we might give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem."

Milano did not say if the campaign was a direct reaction to the dozens of women who have spoken out and continue to speak out against disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

Other women who have used #metoo on social media include Lady Gaga and actress Anna Paquin. Overnight, the trend on Twitter had reached more than 300,000 mentions.

In addition to this campaign, Milano also addressed the Weinstein situation last week on her blog, "Patriot Not Partisan."

"To the women who have suffered any form of abuse of power, I stand beside you. To the women who have come forward against a system that is designed to keep you silent, I stand in awe of you and appreciate you and your fortitude. It is not easy to disclose such experiences, especially in the public eye," she wrote.

Now, in response to the allegations directly against Weinstein, a spokesperson for the movie executive said, "Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein."

Weinstein has been accused of sexual misconduct by numerous women, including actresses Ashley Judd, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie.

"Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances. Mr. Weinstein obviously can’t speak to anonymous allegations, but with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, Mr. Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual," according to the full statement from Weinstein's spokesperson. "Mr. Weinstein has begun counseling, has listened to the community and is pursuing a better path. Mr. Weinstein is hoping that, if he makes enough progress, he will be given a second chance.”

Weinstein was fired from The Weinstein Company, which he co-founded, and has been expelled from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

"The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Board of Governors met today to discuss the allegations against Harvey Weinstein, and has voted well in excess of the required two-thirds majority to immediately expel him from the Academy," according to a statement issued on Saturday from the organization.

Source: abcnews.go.com

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