Tens of thousands of women across the globe are using the hashtag #MeToo as a rallying cry to talk about their own experiences with harassment and sexual assault; others also joining the conversation to show solidarity.
To say it’s struck a nerve is an understatement. According to Twitter spokesman Cameron Gordon, 11, 000 people in Toronto alone have used the hashtag on the platform.
Now, Cityline host Tracy Moore is stepping into the conversation. She will share the story of her own assault on an upcoming episode of the show.
She says the incident affected her for years after.
“For the next five years, I couldn’t sleep without the lights on,” she said. “It took a long time to feel confident again.”
Moore is just the latest woman to lend her voice to the #MeToo conversation. The hashtag flooded social media after American actor Alyssa Milano asked women on Twitter to change their status if they’ve ever experienced sexual harassment or assault.
According to Twitter, there have been a 1.2 million tweets featuring the hashtag since Sunday — 56,000 of those in Canada.
The conversation is encouraging for those at the Canadian Women’s Foundation, but one they said has happened before. The #BeenRapedNeverReported hashtag lit up social media in 2014, not reaching nearly as many as this latest movement.
Keetha Mercer, program manager of community initiatives, said the social media posts really bring out the magnitude of the issue and start a discussion. Mercer said it brings up the issue of believability and that helps support women who are afraid to speak out.
“It breaks the stigma and violence, so it allows women to speak about their issues,” she said.
To hear Tracy Moore’s story and advice for how to move on after an assault, watch Cityline next Wednesday.