Episode 12: Patriarchy Impeached – Is this what justice looks like? The Catherine Claxton story


Episode 12: Patriarchy Impeached – Is this what justice looks like? The Catherine Claxton story

This episode walks us through Catherine Claxton’s story, which has been assembled by G@W Senior Associate Joanne Sandler and Julie Thompson, both long time UN staffers. Catherine’s lawyers — Mary Dorman and Ellen Yaroshefsky — recount the events that led Catherine,  a junior UN staffer, to charge an Undersecretary General with sexual abuse. What unfolded in response mirrors the Me Too stories of today. Patriarchy closed ranks around the perpetrator and demanded allegiance to authority from those in the system; attempts were made to discredit the complainant – in this case, Catherine – and bury her in bureaucratic legalese as she sought to use the existing mechanisms and processes of adjudication to seek justice; and when all the evidence was in and a third party judgement came in favoring her, the UN buried the report. Finally the perpetrator was fired and was given a glorious send off. Sound familiar? Is this what justice looks like in cases of sexual harassment and abuse? How do we impeach patriarchy and hold it accountable? Listen in and tell us what you think.

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