June 10, 2019

Law Firm Representing Sexual Assault Victims Against Major Corporation Receives Award from National Center on Sexual Exploitation

Bold national firm recognized for its consistent diligence in representing women who have been sexually victimized by Massage Envy employees


WASHINGTON, DC, June 3, 2019 – The National Center on Sexual Exploitation is set to award the law firm Laffey, Bucci & Kent, LLP with its Civilian Leadership Award at the 2019 Coalition to End Sexual Exploitation Global Summit the week of June 10.

“Laffey, Bucci & Kent, LLP is standing up to the Goliath of Massage Envy—a multi-million dollar corporation—in order to bring justice to victims of sexual assault,” said Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. “This law firm represents over 30 women who have been victimized at the hands of Massage Envy workers, a popular massage chain with a number of poor policies, including forced arbitration that resulted in Massage Envy being placed on the National Center on Sexual Exploitation’s 2019 Dirty Dozen List. While Massage Envy has begun making some key policy improvements, thanks in large part to the work of Laffey, Bucci & Kent, the NCOSE believes that this company has a lot more work to do when it comes to adopting a healthy corporate policy of complete transparency and accountability as an organization.”

“Specifically, NCOSE is still calling on Massage Envy to make a public commitment to stop forcing its customers to wave their right to bring forward claims against Massage Envy, even when those claims are alleged on intentional or negligent wrongdoing on the part of Massage Envy employees. In the absence of such a commitment, it is difficult to trust that Massage Envy is truly willing to do whatever it takes to protect its customers from abuses like those incurred by the hundreds of victims who have been willing to step forward and tell their stories so far–not to mention the untold-but-statistically-likely number of victims who have not yet chosen to come forward at this time,” Hawkins continued.

“We believe this change is imperative, as are several other important action steps, and we believe that it would represent an important movement toward making our society and our world that much safer for women.”

“Until then, though, we are proud to recognize and champion the diligent work of individuals and organizations—like 2019 Civilian Leadership Award Winner Laffey, Bucci & Kent, LLP—as they strive to defend the dignity of women, children, and men who have been exploited and to end exploitation as a whole, “ Hawkins concluded.

Learn more about why Massage Envy is on the 2019 Dirty Dozen List: https://endsexualexploitation.org/massageenvy/

National Center on Sexual Exploitation

Founded in 1962, the National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) is the leading national organization exposing the links between all forms of sexual exploitation such as child sexual abuse, prostitution, sex trafficking and the public health crisis of pornography.

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