Survivor-Led Advocacy Organizations Call for Action on Sexual Misconduct in Music Industry

Four survivor-led advocacy organizations, including those founded by Gretchen Carlson and Jennifer Seibel Newsom, have published a letter and report urging the music industry to take stronger action against sexual misconduct. Titled “Sound Off: The Make Music Safe Report,” the document compiles decades of previously disclosed allegations against over two dozen prominent artists and industry executives, including Sean “Diddy” Combs, Axl Rose, Justin Geever, Danny Elfman, Russell Simmons, Ahmet Ertegun, and Charlie Walk. While some of the accused individuals have denied the allegations, others have not commented.

The coalition behind the report consists of Carlson’s Lift Our Voices, Seibel Newsom’s Representation Project, the Female Composers Safety League founded by Nomi Abadi, and the Punk Rock Therapist founded by Samantha Maloney and Kristina Sarhadi. During a press conference, Maloney emphasized their commitment to ending sexual abuse in the music industry and supporting survivors.

The letter, addressed to the CEOs of Universal Music Group, Sony Music, and Warner Music Group, outlines five demands: ending non-disclosure agreements, implementing policy protocols, publishing a list of industry figures credibly accused of sexual misconduct, adopting a survivor bill of rights, and establishing a new division within the Recording Academy’s nonprofit arm, MusiCares, focused on addressing sexual misconduct in music.

The report highlights a culture of sexual abuse and cover-ups within the music industry, spanning seven decades. It calls for legislative action and shareholder activism to hold companies accountable and bring about cultural change. The release of the report follows a wave of allegations that have emerged since New York and California passed legislation allowing sexual abuse survivors to file civil suits, regardless of the statute of limitations.

During the press conference, survivors and advocates spoke about the urgent need for action from the industry. Michelle Rhoades, who alleged that Axl Rose sexually assaulted her when she was 15 years old, shared her story publicly for the first time. Sara Lewis, who sued publishing executive Kenny MacPherson over allegations of sexual assault, emphasized that her experience is not isolated and called for a reckoning within the music industry.

The advocates have also copied senators and congress members, urging them to investigate the music business. Gretchen Carlson, in a written statement, called upon congressional leaders to use their power to make the music industry safer and ensure compliance with employment laws and basic human decency.

Author: CrimeDoor

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