Culture&Arts

'13 Reasons Why' Author Jay Asher Responds To Sexual Harassment Allegations

'13 Reasons Why' Author Jay Asher Responds To Sexual Harassment Allegations

Over the weekend of February 11, those comments called out some prominent male young adult authors including Asher and illustrator David Diaz for using SCBWI conferences and events to sexually harass and assault female authors.

Asher was reportedly removed from the group previous year, but his banning has recently started to gain attention following an article about sexual harassment in the children's book industry that was published this week on Medium.

Asher, however, told BuzzFeed he left the organization on his own and that he had been harassed by unspecified individuals there for "close to 10 years" and "could not deal with it anymore".

'During the past decade of harassment related to these affairs, I have never once retaliated. The ban occurred past year but just came to light.

"After we investigated, we felt that terminating his membership was the proper course of action", Oliver told BuzzFeed News.

Executive director Lin Oliver confirmed that it was because of the society's sexual harassment policy but did not go into detail.

The San Luis Obispo native is best known for his novel Thirteen Reasons Why, which inspired a Netflix series. "I love the organization, but they didn't decide to push me out". He admitted that he was afraid to comment on the situation because he didn't know who is going to believe him. The Oklahoma Writers' Federation has already cancelled a planned keynote address by Asher at a conference in May. A handful of commenters on the School Library Journal thread said their anecdotes were about Asher.

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Earlier this week, news broke that Jay Asher and another author had "been expelled from the SCBWI" and were "not welcome as members, faculty or speakers ..." "Mr. Asher speaks around the country about mental health and treating people with respect and kindness, yet continues to regularly destroy the mental health of many women, and he has taken advantage of women who are themselves depressed".

A Netflix spokesperson gave a statement to Vanity Fair, saying, "Jay Asher was not involved in the second season of 13 Reasons Why".

Netflix is planning to bring "Thirteen Reasons Why" back in 2018, but hasn't set a date.

Time will tell if the claims against Asher will have any impact on the second season.

The series sparked discussion between schools, parents and children over bullying and suicide.

Last weekend, he responded to a tweet by the prize-winning author Laurie Halse Anderson, who wrote of her 'volcanic anger about rape culture and toxic masculinity'.


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