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The powerful reason why celebrities staged a successful mass walkout for #BelieveSurvivors

Posted by
Susan Devaney
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This week people stood in solidarity with the women who have accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault by staging a mass walkout. 

There are many reasons why women think twice before reporting sexual assault. For one, women fear the risk of being blamed for what they were wearing, for the second glass of wine they drank or for simply being out late at night. But when women do choose to report an assault, they run the risk of not being believed – just cast your mind back to the recent Ulster rugby case.

But as the #MeToo movement and Time’s Up initiative have proved, women have had enough. Which is why in light of the recent cases involving Dr Christine Blasey Ford and Deborah Ramirez, who have both accused US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault (which Kavanaugh denies), women walked out of their workplaces at the same time across America on Monday 24 September in solidarity with them.

Dr Christine Blasey Ford, a professor in California, alleges that Kavanaugh groped her at a high school party and covered her mouth to prevent her from screaming. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing,” she told the Washington Post. Ford will testify on Thursday 27 September.

Ramirez alleges Kavanaugh exposed himself during a party at Yale in the early Eighties. “I remember a penis being in front of my face,” she recently told the New Yorker. “I knew that’s not what I wanted, even in that state of mind.” No court date has been set. 

Kavanaugh denies both incidents and called the claims “smears” and a “character assassination”.

The accusations led Time’s Up to call for a mass walkout.

“Survivors must be heard. Wear black and join the national walkout on Monday 24 September at 1 pm ET/10 am PT in solidarity with Dr Christine Blasey Ford,” Time’s Up tweeted.

Have a look below at some of the celebrities – including Mandy Moore, Kerry Washington and Emmy Rossum – who joined the protest using the hashtag #BelieveSurvivors. 

You can read more on the #MeToo movement and Time’s Up intitative here. 

Images: Getty / Twitter