Anita Hill To Wellesley College Graduates: ‘We Cannot Squander’ the Voices Of The #MeToo Movement

By Jacqueline Tempera, Springfield, Mass.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) In her commencement address to Wellesley graduates, Hill said she was “passing the baton” to a new generation of leaders in the fight to end gender violence while promising to never stay silent., Springfield, Mass.

Anita Hill called sexual assault a “public crisis” during her commencement address at Wellesley College Friday while rallying students to use the momentum behind the #MeToo as a way to force societal change.

“Where gender violence is concerned the challenges are immense. I cannot sugar coat it,” Hill told the 571 graduates of the private women’s college in Wellesley Friday afternoon. “The numbers speak for themselves.”

Twenty-two percent of college students report at least one sexual assault during their academic careers, Hill said, citing statistics from the National Institute of Health. In 2018, the number of reported charges alleging sexual harassment increased by more than 12 percent from the previous year, Hill said, citing a study by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Hill said these numbers just scratch the surface. Sexual assault and harassment are underreported making it impossible to know the full scope of the problem, Hill said.

Hill spoke of “sexual misconduct deniers” who believe the statistics and stories are a hoax. She took a subtle jab at President Donald Trump without naming him, saying: “Despite the evidence sexual misconduct deniers have friends in high places.”

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