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#MeToo Movement Hits Sports Industry

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Sanskriti Adigal, Staff Writer

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  Upon Sports Illustrated publishing an article regarding sexual harassment cases by former Dallas Mavericks employees, the NBA officially joined the #MeToo movement, which empowers women to speak out about sexual harassment and assault through the business, entertainment, and political world. The NBA made the decision to join the movement after high profile sexual assault claims were brought up against the NFL and MLB.

  The #MeToo movement, which surfaced virally in October 2017, was first coined by Tarana Burke and Alyssa Milano as they shared personal stories of sexual violence. The movement was then voiced by several celebrities including Ashley Judd, Jennifer Lawrence, Uma Thurman, and Gwyneth Paltrow.

  As a league that has constantly has developed its ideals on promoting diversity, equality and inclusiveness, this served as an opportunity to further prove the NBA believes in these values.  

  The NBA was the first of the four major professional sports leagues to have an openly-gay player, former Brooklyn Nets center Jason Collins and hire the first female assistant coach San Antonio Spurs assistant, Becky Hammon. It also moved its All-Star Game out of North Carolina, after the state passed anti-LGBT legislation and banned owner, Donald Sterling from playing after after recordings surfaced of him making racist comments.

  Irene Lee (10), who is a fan of the NBA, states, “I think it is great that the league has a made a decision to support the movement, as they have a record of doing so in the past. It shows that women are being heard and that their concerns are being voiced to the public.”

   However, the NBA has been dealing with its highest profile sexual assault case, in the midst of the movement, involving owner,  Mark Cuban. Cuban, who has not been directly related to sexual harrasment himself, has allowed his employees to behave in an indecent manner. Although  he initially denied the claims, Cuban was aware of the inappropriate culture and misogynistic behavior that took place under his oversight.

   Nevertheless, the league plans to continue conducting respect in its workplace. As  Bucks President Peter Feigin claims, “Every year we go through it, but we are changing the curriculum. We are bringing in consultants to talk about it. The difference is that we think of it as a 12-month curriculum.

  As a result, the NBA has assured that it will continue training its employees over the next few months to prevent future issues.   

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