Civil Litigation and Other Alternatives to Criminal Prosecution Can Achieve the Kind of Institutional Reforms Victims Care About

Abuse Victims

By Lieff Cabraser Attorney Avery Halfon

The cultural impact of Harvey Weinstein’s criminal conviction for felony sex crimes may be broader than any other in years. As the revelations of his abuse were the spark that ignited the #MeToo movement, his guilty verdict symbolizes a formal recognition how much sexual misconduct matters, how it happens, and the harm it causes. It may spur more potential individual and institutional offenders to “get it” and behave differently—not only because it may signal a more concrete risk of consequences, but because it may help those potential offender internalize why they should change their individual conduct or institutional culture to prevent sexual misconduct in the first place. As I wrote recently, both research and anecdotal evidence shows that such understanding and prevention is exactly what victims value most. [Read more…]

What Victims Value: Individual and Institutional Offenders “Getting It” and Changing Their Behavior

Abuse Victims

By Lieff Cabraser Attorney Avery Halfon

Harvey Weinstein’s criminal conviction for felony sex crimes may be a watershed moment in our cultural recognition and legal handling of sexual misconduct. The more than 90 women who spoke out about Weinstein’s abuse deserve an enormous amount of credit for their bravery, which awakened a societal sea change through the #MeToo movement that led to this guilty verdict. [Read more…]