When sexual abuse allegations first surfaced against powerful Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein in 2016, few people had heard of #metoo. A trickle of actresses who accused Weinstein of sexual abuse quickly turned into a flood of women who posted their own stories on Twitter. Within the blink of an eye, #metoo became a worldwide movement of women speaking out against sexual harassment and sexual abuse.
At Unifor’s constitutional convention in August, “Me Too” founder Tarana Burke will be a featured speaker. Burke is a civil rights activist from New York, who began using the phrase to raise awareness of the pervasiveness of sexual abuse in society in 2006.
Burke says there has been a lot of emphasis on perpetrators of sexual violence, but very little discussion about the lives of survivors and the process of healing. Burke intends to help lead the focus on that discussion in the years ahead.
Burke was named Time Magazine’s Person of the Year for 2017. She speaks at events across North America and is Senior Director for the organization Girls for Gender Equity in Brooklyn.
Her speech at Unifor’s Quebec City Convention will be on August 20 at 2pm. Members not attending the convention can watch her live on Unifor’s Facebook page.