Kate Upton blasted Guess’ sexual misconduct investigation into Paul Marciano on Wednesday as nothing but a PR stunt.
“I just learned that Guess hired Paul Marciano’s personal lawyer to run their internal ‘investigation.’ I’m truly disheartened to learn that Guess is treating this abuse of power and sexual misconduct (to multiple women) in such a manner,” the 25-year-old Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model wrote in a post on Instagram.
“I shared my story to help create long-term change at the highest levels of the industry and corporate ladder,” she added. “I also wanted to empower others to share their stories to stand up for change-whether as a victim of or as a witness to this behavior.”
She then thanked those who have been “brave enough” to speak out.
“Hearing how this “investigation” is being conducted and also knowing a strong fear of retaliation still exists within Guess’ corporate offices, is extremely disappointing and upsetting,” the swimsuit model wrote. “The #MeToo movement is not one of smoke and mirrors or for corporate office PR stunts to impress shareholders–it’s a call to action for true change.”
“To conduct and investigation like this seems like a stunt and is a clear indication to me that Guess is not taking these claims seriously, nor are they committed to making changes at the highest levels,” she added. “Until Guess makes a commitment to conduct an unbiased investigation, I have declined to participate. I look forward to participating if and when Guess retains a truly independent firm to run the entire investigation.”
Last week, Guess co-founder Marciano announced he would step away from daily responsibilities with the company pending the completion of an investigation into Upton’s allegations of sexual misconduct.
The move comes several weeks after the super model accused Marciano of sexually and emotionally harassing her as a young model.
“It’s disappointing that such an iconic women’s brand @GUESS is still empowering Paul Marciano as their creative director #metoo,” Upton tweeted on January 31.
The actress and model told Time magazine the Guess co-founder grabbed her boobs, claiming he wanted to make sure “they’re real.” Then he grabbed the back of her head and started forcibly kissing her face and neck so she couldn’t move.
Marciano has denied the allegations.