According to research from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 in 5 women and 1 in 38 men have experienced rape or attempted rape during their lifetime.
In recent times there have been many cases of sexual abuse by people in positions of power and responsibility, including members of clergy, boy scout leaders, teachers, doctors and coaches.
A ProPublica database lists 6,754 clergymen as “credibly accused” of sexual misconduct as of January 28, 2020. More than 18,000 survivors have come forward with their stories of sexual abuse at the hands of U.S. Catholic Church clergy.
The Southern Baptist Church, the largest Protestant denomination in the US has also been rocked by scandal. A Houston Chronicle investigation found that hundreds of clergy or staff allegedly committed sexual abuse over two decades.
38 students of an Orthodox Jewish School run by Yeshiva University in New York City accused two prominent rabbis of sexual abuse last year. The attorneys general in Illinois, Pennsylvania, and several other states recently opened investigations into sexual abuse by clergy and the resulting cover-ups.
Of course, sexual abuse is not limited to the clergy. The Boy Scouts of America filed for bankruptcy on February 18, 2020 after reports of over 12,000 cases of sexual assault surfaced against at least 7,800 alleged abusers. Some of these cases dated back to 1965.
Doctors occupy a position of great trust and responsibility, but some have grossly abused their privilege to harm patients. As a former doctor for USA Gymnastics and physician at Michigan State University, Nassar was responsible for the sexual assault of more than 150 women. Anderson was widely known among the student athlete and gay communities at University of Michigan for sexual abuse and demanding sexual favors. Ohio State doctor Richard Strauss sexually abused at least 177 male students over decades, reports say. These are just 3 high-profile instances.
Similarly, teachers and coaches at all levels have been accused of sexual harassment and abuse. As of December 2019, New York alone had at least 60 lawsuits filed against sports coaches, accusing them of predatory behavior. In 2015, a survey reported that 3.5 million students in grade 8 through grade 11 (7% of the group surveyed) reported some form of physical sexual abuse.
Sexual abuse is a social evil and must be rooted out. The pain and suffering from abuse affects victims long after the incident. Sexual abuse must be stopped, and the abusers must be held responsible for their actions. The repeated lies, denials, coverups, and failures to investigate these crimes are proof that the powerful institutions and workplaces where these abusers worked cannot be trusted to resolve the sexual abuses crises on their own.
Our firm is working tirelessly to hold abusers accountable and provide relief and justice to survivors. We offer expertise, 100% confidentiality, and compassionate representation to many individuals. Join many others in the fight for justice against powerful abusers and help prevent them from harming future generations.