LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Women’s rights campaigners on Tuesday marked two years since the #MeToo campaign against sexual harassment first swept through social media.
FILE PHOTO: Actress Alyssa Milano poses at the 32nd American Cinematheque Award ceremony honoring Bradley Cooper in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., November 29, 2018. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok
The global movement has brought down multiple high-profile figures and sparked wider debates over women’s safety, workplace representation and sexism.
Here’s how #MeToo grew from a grassroots campaign to a global touchpoint:
2006: Activist Tarana Burke creates the “Me Too” movement to help sexual assault victims in underprivileged communities in the United States.
Oct. 5-8, 2017: Hollywood film mogul Harvey Weinstein is fired from his production company after being accused of sexually harassment. Scores of women have since accused him of sexual misconduct dating back decades, allegations he denies. Weinstein faces trial for rape in January 2020.
Oct. 15, 2017: Actor Alyssa Milano urges anyone who has been sexually assaulted to write “Me too” on Twitter, in a post that prompts a flood of women to share their stories and is hailed as the start of the mass #MeToo movement.
Oct. 2017: The movement goes international, with France seeing a similar online campaign under the hashtag #BalanceTonPorc.
Dec. 6, 2017: Time magazine names the “silence breakers” who have spoken out about sexual harassment and assault, as its Person of the Year.
Jan. 1, 2018: Hollywood stars help launch a #TimesUp campaign against sexual harassment. The initiative raises millions of dollars for a legal fund to help victims of sexual harassment in the workplace.
Jan. 9, 2018: Actor Catherine Deneuve and 99 other French women lead a backlash against #MeToo, saying the campaign against sexual harassment amounts to “puritanism” and is fueled by a “hatred of men”.
Jan. 24, 2018: USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar is sentenced to up to 175 years in prison for abusing young gymnasts. Top Olympic gymnast Simone Biles says she was among his victims.
April 26, 2018: Comedian Bill Cosby is convicted of drugging and sexually assaulting a woman, the first such successful prosecution since the movement started. Cosby is later sentenced to three to 10 years in jail.
Sept. 27, 2018: Academic Christine Blasey Ford gives evidence at a Senate hearing beamed worldwide that U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her.
Oct. 2018: India’s #MeToo movement gathers momentum with a wave of allegations leveled at media, sports, business and political figures.
Oct. 12, 2018: More than 800 high-profile public figures in entertainment, politics, government, media and academia have been accused of sexual misconduct since Cosby’s arrest in December 2015, according to management consultants Temin and Co.
Feb. 5, 2019: Pope Francis acknowledges that nuns have been sexually abused by priests and bishops, with some used as sex slaves.
June 21, 2019: The U.N. agency overseeing international labor standards adopts a new treaty against violence and harassment in the workplace.
Feb. to Aug. 2019: Singer R. Kelly, who has faced sex abuse allegations for more than two decades, is charged in multiple cases in different states for crimes including sexual assault and sex trafficking. He faces trial in 2020.
July 1, 2019: A rape accusation against a popular Nigerian pastor prompts women to share their own experiences of abuse. Nigerian actors have said abuse is also rife in Nollywood, the country’s film industry.
Aug. 10, 2019: Financier Jeffrey Epstein dies by suicide in a New York jail cell while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.
Sept. 17, 2019: Iceland hosts the first international #MeToo conference to brainstorm ways to end sexism, harassment and violence against women.
Oct. 2, 2019: Opera singer Placido Domingo resigns as general director of LA Opera following multiple sexual harassment allegations, which he denies.
Oct. 2, 2019: Two years on from the movement’s birth, some of Hollywood’s biggest names say #MeToo has raised awareness, but there is a long way to go.
Reporting by Sonia Elks @soniaelks and Emma Batha @emmabatha; Editing by Belinda Goldsmith; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change. Visit http://news.trust.org