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Adult female survivors of sexual assault while employed at large New York ad agencies can finally get justice and compensation

Adult female survivors of sexual assault while employed at large New York ad agencies can finally get justice and compensation

The Adult Survivors Act grants women who suffered sexual abuse in the 1980s and 1990s at large New York ad agencies a second chance at justice and the right to file a civil lawsuit for compensation.

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Details about the sexual assault of female employees at large New York ad agencies

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The ad industry was long known as a fun-time boys club, one that closely reflected the grab-ass banter and darker undertones of the fictional hit TV show Mad Men.

In 2016, the 3% Conference surveyed 600 women across the US for their ‘Elephant On Madison Avenue’ report.

They found that over half of the respondents had been subjected to an unwanted sexual advance–88% of which were from a colleague, 70% from a superior, and 49% from a client–yet only 1 in 3 filed a complaint.

In a 2018 survey in the UK by TimeTo, the ad industry body that was set up after #MeToo began its explosion, 41% of respondents said that they’d experienced sexual harassment and/or assault in their place of work (i.e ad agencies) but of those, 83% had not reported it.

And that’s because 82% claimed their harassers and abusers were senior to them–with bosses and managers as the most common perpetrators.

“Nothing really happened after MeToo…” former ad exec Zoe Scaman explained, “No real policy changes were enacted–there were a lot of pledges, a lot of heartfelt open letters, conference panels, but nothing has really changed.

“I don’t think the men who have done stuff already are going to be held to account–I think they’ve gotten away with it.”

How the Adult Survivor Act is giving those women a second chance at justice

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Adult abuse survivors will be able to sue their assailants for decades-old attacks under bipartisan legislation signed into law.

The State Assembly overwhelmingly passed the Adult Survivors Act, which enables adult victims, those 18 or older at the time of the alleged abuse, a one-time opportunity to file civil lawsuits in New York, even if any statutes of limitations have run out.

The bill mirrors New York’s Child Victims Act and gives adult survivors a one-year window to file suit.

The elements of the Adult Survivor’s Act include the following:

  • The measure is described as an act of “restorative justice;”
  • It allows victims some level of accountability and recompense; and,
  • It deters individuals and institutions from turning a blind eye in the future.

According to Gov. Kathy Hochul, “To those who thought they got away with a perfect crime, I say to you: Your time is up. Your victims will see you in court.”

State lawmakers lengthened the statutes of limitations for many offenses in 2019–however, those changes did not apply retroactively, which advocates of the Adult Survivors Act said made the bill necessary.

The USA Assistance Team is encouraging adult female survivors of sexual assault at large ad agencies–especially those employed in the 1980s and 1990s–to come forward and get a free, private case evaluation for justice and compensation!

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