Investigations into Sexual Assaults at Cadet Sea Year Programs

We are representing two brave female U.S. Merchant Marine (USMMA) students in their lawsuits against cargo ship owner-operator Maersk Line for failing to protect them from sexual assault and harassment during the cadets’ “Sea Year” program aboard the Maersk M/V Alliance Fairfax.

Hope Hicks was raped by a superior officer, and the female cadet who goes by the moniker “Midshipman Y” suffered continuous sexual harassment from a Maersk crew member. Along with Hope and Midshipman Y, we are committed to bringing about systematic change to maritime training programs like Sea Year and to ending sexual assault and sexual abuse in the maritime industry.

After Hope shared her story with a national audience, other victims came forward with their own stories of sexual assault and harassment during their time as cadets aboard commercial cargo ships. If you were sexually assaulted or harassed as a cadet in a Sea Year program or if you have information about sexual assault and/or sexual harassment in a maritime training program, please fill out our online form or contact the Sanford Heisler Sharp team of dedicated attorneys and staff at [email protected].

Sanford Heisler Sharp led by Partner Christine Dunn, is joining with Ryan Melogy of Maritime Legal Solutions, PLLC, to investigate the full extent of the problem and to hold accountable the individuals, institutions and shipping companies that have enabled perpetrators of sexual assault and harassment to continue unabated. Ryan Melogy, a graduate of the USMMA and experienced lawyer, understands the maritime industry first-hand and has dedicated his professional life to ending sexual assault, sexual harassment, and other abusive behaviors within the maritime industry. Sanford Heisler Sharp is a nationally recognized civil rights firm that has handled many cases involving classes of women and individuals who were sexually harassed and/or sexually assaulted.

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