The #SpeakingOut movement has been growing on social media over the past 24 hours as many women have been discussing past experiences with abuse and assault in the industry.
Many independent promotions cut ties with David Starr earlier this week after a woman alleged that Starr sexually assaulted and abused her. Starr is being stripped of titles that he held in RevPro U.K., OTT, TNT Extreme and Ultimate Pro Wrestling.
Starr denied accusations that he was a sexual predator, although admitted that he was "an awful partner." Starr said that he's fine if this is the end of wrestling for him, adding, "No matter what I say, I'm the bad guy. No pity party. It is what it is."
Starr has since deactivated his social media accounts.
Accusations have since surfaced online against talent in WWE, AEW, Impact and ROH, as well as wrestling legends and a top NWA executive. There will clearly be a lot more on these stories in the coming days and weeks.
WWE already issued a statement regarding an accusation from a woman who claimed that WWE NXT UK Superstar Jordan Devlin abused her. She posted photos on her Twitter of bruises on her body which she alleged were caused by Devlin, which she since deleted. WWE's statement read, "We take any allegation of this nature very seriously and are looking into the matter."
British Wrestling Revolution noted that they removed a member of their roster weeks ago due to an accusation of inappropriate behavior. They are not releasing the name "out of respect to the wishes of the victim."
Black Label Pro announced that they are severing all ties with Johnathan Wolf after a woman claimed that he had verbally and sexually assaulted her on multiple occasions.
Jim Cornette's attorney, Steve New, indicated that they would be taking legal action regarding some serious allegations made against Cornette and his wife.
A number of people in the industry have commented on the movement. Paige wrote, "I'm only just catching up properly with social media and wow. Seeing so many of you speaking out against these disgusting humans makes me so sad to see your experiences but proud of you for telling your story. Keep using your voice. We love you and have your back"
Big E also commented on the movement, writing, "I pray our industry is swiftly rid of all these predators & abusers. To everyone brave enough to tell their story, I'm so sorry you had to endure this."
There were many other comments from stars in WWE, AEW, Impact and other promotions, you can see some of the reactions below:
I pray our industry is swiftly rid of all these predators & abusers. To everyone brave enough to tell their story, I'm so sorry you had to endure this. #SpeakingOut— Florida Man (@WWEBigE) June 18, 2020
Sorry I've not been very vocal today. This is a hard one. To everyone #SpeakingOut I'm proud of you and I love you ?— KayLeeRay?????????? (@Kay_Lee_Ray) June 18, 2020
I'm only just catching up properly with social media and wow. Seeing so many of you speaking out against these disgusting humans makes me so sad to see your experiences but proud of you for telling your story. Keep using your voice. We love you and have your back ?? #SpeakingOut— PAIGE (@RealPaigeWWE) June 19, 2020
I was lucky enough to have my story heard years ago. Now, it's your turn. Proud of the women & men coming forward. You are heard. ?? #SpeakingOut— The HBIC (@MiaYim) June 19, 2020
I'm disgusted by what I'm reading.— Pete Dunne (@PeteDunneYxB) June 18, 2020
Well done to those speaking out. I really hope we can make British wrestling a better place and keep everyone safe.
This is a huge eye opener and let's hope it will force a big change.
And just to add of course I don't know the ins and outs out any claims being made about anyone unless there is clear proof. I'm reading for the first time like everyone else but I want wrestling to be a much safer place and I'm keeping up to date and speaking out the best I can.— Pete Dunne (@PeteDunneYxB) June 19, 2020
#SpeakingOut is hard to do and I applaud each and every one who shared their truth. We are survivors and there is strength in overcoming turmoil. I pray you all usher in a peace that surpasses all understanding! Much love ??— Big Swole ???? (@SwoleWorld) June 19, 2020
The things I have read today have made me sick to my stomach.— TUCKy (@tuckerwwe) June 19, 2020
To anyone Speaking Out I'm sorry you had to go through these things, thank you for your courage.
To my colleagues, if you ever need a confidant at work it would be my honor.
Sex abuse needs to end.#SpeakingOut
It's not about "cancelling" people.— Shazza McKenzie (@Shazza_McKenzie) June 19, 2020
We just don't want to be sexually assaulted, abused manipulated and violated for choosing to be in wrestling.#SpeakingOut
This seems like a great time to remind people that telling someone they should've come out with their story when it happened is not acceptable. In our world, there have been more consequences for the people #SpeakingOut than the actual offenders. That needs to change.— Allysin Kay (@Sienna) June 18, 2020
*sigh*— Hopeful Lee (@RealKeithLee) June 19, 2020
We absolutely MUST do better. Period.
We have enough trash going on in the world right now.