After what happened in the Senate Education Budget Committee on Thursday, 6 News reached out to some of the victims of Larry Nassar as well as one of the attorneys.
Attorney Andrew Abood says John Engler’s perspective was interesting to say the least.
He also says there really hasn’t been a whole lot of discussion involving a settlement since mediation broke down in November of last year.
“When you hear those comments, it seems to suggest that any type of reason has to be based upon truth and fact and those comments didn’t seem to be in that realm,” said Abood.
Abood is referring to comments made on Thursday afternoon by Michigan State’s Interim President John Engler.
Engler argued that a package of bills passed in the Michigan Senate influenced by the scandal against former doctor Larry Nassar is interfering with the universities efforts to settle a lawsuit.
But Abood says that’s unrealistic.
“Attack the idea but not the person bringing the idea,” Abood stated.
Abood isn’t the only one raising eyebrows at Engler’s complaints…6 News reached out to a couple Nassar survivors too.
Kaylee Lorincz sent a statement that says:
“To say that President Engler’s statements made me sick to my stomach would be an understatement. He said his community is healing. Is he even listening? His faculty and student body continue to fight against everything he stands for. He didn’t even know what his own spokesperson put out 15 minutes before the hearing. Everything he said was defensive, arrogant, and sometimes outright lies. Honestly, all of this just makes me relive my assaults over and over again. I have a favor to ask Mr. Engler. Close your eyes and imagine your 13 year old daughter lying on an exam table while Larry Nassar inserts his fingers into her over and over again. She wants to cry out but she can’t because she’s been trained to be silent. Now open your eyes. How do you feel about what you’re doing now? He disgusts me!”
Jessica Smith, another victim of Nassar also sent a statement:
“I can’t even begin to explain my frustration with recent events, especially those revolving around John Engler. When he was appointed into his position at Michigan State University, he promised change and that he would treat us as his own daughters. Sadly, I have to continually reassure myself and my Sister Survivors, that there is no opposition to our stories. Filing to dismiss our cases, not being truthful about mediation, and opposing the Bills that are proposed to help save children- this is not transparency, support, or compassion. Our community deserves better that the leaders who are STILL in authority positions. #MeTooMSU”
So how does the community move forward? Abood says less talk and more action.
“If they want to resolve the litigation they need to sit down with the plaintiffs lawyers, if they want to make change within their institution and address sexual assault in a way that really makes a difference for the future of kids…they need to sit down with the survivors,” said Abood.
Stay with 6 news. We will continue to cover the fallout from the scandal surrounding Larry Nassar and be sure to keep you updated with the latest.