Their donation was listed as “on behalf of the heroic gymnasts on the USA Olympic Team.”
USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar was sentenced to a maximum 175 years in prison on Jan. 24 for sexually assaulting over 150 young female athletes. At his sentencing hearing, the athletes came together to share their stories of abuse, which helped to determine Nassar’s sentence.
“I can’t think of a better scenario,” said Elaine Ducharme, a psychologist in Glastonbury, Connecticut, who specializes in treating trauma from sexual abuse, to The New York Times. “To have the judge hear them, to allow their stories to influence her decisions, and all without putting them through the trauma of an actual trial. Most of them are likely to have felt tremendous relief.”
While the testimony may help these women heal from devastating abuse, their heroism has also inspired others to protect sexual assault survivors. In the wake of the gymnasts’ testimony, Chrissy Teigen and her husband, John Legend, have donated $200,000 to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund. Their donation was listed on its GoFundMe page as “on behalf of the heroic gymnasts on the USA Olympic Team.”
Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images.
The pledge comes after Teigen announced she’d pay any fines that gymnast McKayla Maroney may incur by participating in the trial. Maroney had signed a nondisclosure agreement in a previous settlement and feared she’d be fined for speaking out again. USA Gymnastics later issued a statement saying that Maroney would not be fined.
The entire principle of this should be fought - an NDA to stay quiet about this serial monster with over 140 accusers, but I would be absolutely honored to pay this fine for you, McKayla. pic.twitter.com/lsBEgEqZpD— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) January 16, 2018\n
According to the GoFundMe page, the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund will provide “subsidized legal support to women and men who have experienced sexual harassment, assault, or abuse in the workplace and while in pursuit of their careers.” The fund, which has already reached $19.4 million of its $20 million goal, will be administered by the National Women’s Law Center.