The athletes who spoke out against abuse by Larry Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor, will be awarded this year’s Arthur Ashe Courage Award.
“The strength and resolve these individuals have shown in speaking out has brought the darkness of sexual abuse into the light and inspired many others to speak up about their own experiences,” ESPN stated in a press release.
The Arthur Ashe Courage Award is presented annually at the ESPYS to someone whose contributions transcend sports. Named after the tennis icon, the award has been given to athletes who’ve broken barriers such as Muhammad Ali, Billie Jean King and Pat Summitt.
ESPN tweeted a photo of a few of the survivors who had all spoken out again Nassar. They along with others will be honored on July 18 at the ESPYS.
Olympic gold medal gymnast Aly Raisman tweeted: “What an honor. Incredibly proud to stand with the army of survivors.”
Nassar admitted in court to using his position as a trusted medical doctor to sexually abuse young girls and women who came to him for medical care for about two decades. During a remarkable series of court hearings, dozens of women came forward to speak out against Nassar as well as the institutions that they said protected him. Nassar was sentenced to more than 100 years in prison.
He had been employed as a sports physician at Michigan State University from 1997 to 2016.
The university will pay $500 million to settle lawsuits brought by 332 victims of Nassar.