“This is Precedent-Setting”: Weinstein Survivors React to Weinstein Guilty Verdict


Photo credit: Amanda Demme for New York Magazine

Dozens of survivors who came forward with allegations of sexual harassment and assault against Harvey Weinstein are speaking out in response to his conviction.  

WATCH the press conference survivors held this morning outside Los Angeles City Hall, live streamed by CBS News

READ reactions from Weinstein survivors who testified in the case in their own words:

Mimi Haleyi: “It was just a huge sense of relief, just a relief that the jury got it, that they believed me and that I was heard…. I also thank all the women that came forward before me that created this environment where I felt safe to speak out.”

Dawn Dunning: “Mainly my overwhelming feeling is that it’s really nice to see that money and power doesn’t make you completely untouchable, and your voice can be heard and justice can be served.”

Annabella Sciorra: “My testimony was painful but necessary…. For in speaking truth to power, we pave the way for a more just culture, free of the scourge of violence against women.”

READ reactions from additional Weinstein survivors in their own words:

Lysette Anthony: “This is a day that truth has won. This is a momentous day and this is a day that hiding behind petty transactional defenses were slaughtered. That’s what we did.”

Rosanna Arquette: “We will change the laws in the future so that rape victims are heard and not discredited and so that it’s easier for people to report their rapes.” 

Jessica Barth: “I really, really believe that this is a brand new era in the world of sexual violence. If someone this powerful with the unlimited resources that Harvey Weinstein has can be brought to justice, anybody can. I really encourage victims to come forward and put the shame and the blame on their perpetrators and take it off of themselves.”

Zoe Brock: “This is a huge day. I’m crying right now because I expected the worst. Because for us, the worst keeps happening.”

Rowena Chiu: “Two years ago I didn’t have a voice, and today, I have a voice that is amplified beyond any of my expectations.”

Caitlin Dulany: “This is profound, this is precedent-setting…it is not the same, it will never be the same for survivors everywhere.” 

Lucia Evans: “Hopefully, this gives more women the strength to come forward. It really took a village of women to do this.”

Louisette Geiss: “[Rape or sexual harassment] is a personal injury for life. It is now time to create and change laws that rise up to our enlightened society that we seem to be becoming. If we are going to ask women and men and transgender people — everyone — to stand up and rise up, than we need to ask our laws to rise up and support them.”

Louise Godbold: “This was never about Harvey. This was about what we as a society will tolerate. And I, for one, am glad the message is clear: hurt other people and there will be consequences. Your power and money will not protect you.”

Larissa Gomes: “Harvey Weinstein’s conviction does give me a sense of peace. Justice was served…This verdict is not everything, but it is significant in so many ways. In my mind, I’m no longer trapped in a hotel room with Harvey Weinstein forever because I am here now with all these fierce women after his rape conviction.”

Ashley Judd: “I think that Harvey’s guilty verdict demonstrates how overwhelmingly guilty he was. A perpetrator has to be overwhelmingly guilty for justice to be served at this time.”

Katherine Kendall: ”Harvey banked on our fear, he bet on our silence, and he collected for many many years. But today, he lost the bet, and we are the ones winning.” 

Jasmine Lobe: “This is a watershed moment in history. Sexual harassment and assault exist throughout our society and Weinstein’s trial allowed us to talk about just how prevalent this issue is. I hope we will continue that conversation and help empower those who can speak up.” 

Sarah Ann Masse: “The gratitude I feel to the women who took the stand in NY cannot be overstated. They’re like a beacon…The time for survivors to rise up and thrive has come.”

Rose McGowan: “It’s a bizarre thing to feel privileged over being able to have a voice after being raped, but here we are. I believe we can be better as a world, as people, as humans. Today is one more step forward in that direction.”

Melissa Sagemiller Nesic: “Yesterday’s verdict was a loud and unwavering statement —  a cry for accountability — plain and simple. We need to witness accountability at the highest levels to ensure that nobody is above the law.”

Lauren O’Connor: “In 2015 when I was an employee at the Weinstein company, I filed a memo citing the assaults of other women and workplace abuse. In 2017, that memo became the cornerstone of the article that first broke the story on Harvey Weinstein. In that memo I wrote… the balance of power is me: zero, Harvey Weinstein: 10. Yesterday, the scale of justice restored the balance of power, they tipped in favor of survivors of assault and workplace inequity. The balance of power is now: Survivors and Silence Breakers: 10, abusers and predators: zero.”

Lisa Rose: “I hope that today is seen as a huge victory and an example to all the men out there who are currently behaving in this way…it’s not the end, it’s the beginning.” 

Erika Rosenbaum: “Along the way we’ve received messages from hundreds of thousands of people giving us strength and saying ‘we believe you’ and that ‘we are you.’ I feel like today is a victory for every single one of them too.”

Lauren Sivan: “Things are changing. This is a new day…The jury believed the women.”

Mira Sorvino: “Harvey Weinstein has haunted many of our lives, even our nightmares, long after he initially did what he did to each one of us. We have finally taken that power back.”  

Paula Williams: “I really believe that we’ve paved a new way today…I hope that what has happened today and all the work we have done will serve as a beacon for all future Silence Breakers.” 


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