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Terin Humphrey’s Statement

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TumbleTimes4

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She made a statement on her Facebook page today:

June 11, 2019: Statement of Terin Humphrey

For nearly twenty years I have been a part of USA Gymnastics. From a little girl with big dreams all the way to the day those dreams came true, representing and winning medals for the United States in the 2004 Olympics. After my competitive career in college I was given the opportunity to come back to USA Gymnastics as an Athlete Representative. It has been a privilege and honor to represent the athletes. I volunteered for four years, gave up a career as a police officer, and worked tirelessly to better myself for the role of Athlete Rep. I chose my true love and followed my heart. I chose gymnastics because I wanted to make a difference for the sport and the talented athletes that compete with passion. This decision was made knowing the sacrifices that it would take for me and my family including the overall emotional and financial security.

The horrific events surrounding Larry Nassar leave me wondering if any of my sacrifices or work has made a difference. Throughout the ordeal with Larry Nassar I was instructed by USAG not to speak out or express an opinion. For example: “Terin, stay quiet,” “Terin, no speaking out or posting,” and “Terin, you can’t have an opinion.” I followed instructions and only spoke about my own life and my own experiences. I wanted to be able to keep my life and legacy in the sport alive. I have been attacked for it online including death threats and accusations of not supporting the athletes.

USA Gymnastics has not provided any support. In fact, they perpetuated a dysfunctional and dangerous culture by allowing the release of confidential emails and creating an intentional disconnect between me and the athletes I was charged with supporting. Staff members who reached out directly were summarily fired.

During life in the sport and as Athlete Rep. I have taken injured kids and athletes to hospitals while holding together their broken bodies. I have cried with them. I have cried with their parents. I have given my all for the love of the sport. Now, USA Gymnastics is actively working to harm me, my reputation, my name, and my career. Their recent decisions have made it increasingly impossible to find and maintain employment.

On May 3rd, 2019, USA Gymnastics new CEO informed me that I was not going to be asked to leave USA Gymnastics.On May 5th, I was asked to resign by USA Gymnastics leadership even though my position was an elected position by the Athletes Council not USA Gymnastics. Ostensibly because of a Facebook post on my personal page. Finally on May 20th, the Athletes Council decided to remove me from the position because of the pressure being placed upon them by USA Gymnastics. USA Gymnastics is primarily run by attorneys who have no interest whatsoever in truly protecting or growing the sport. It is clear the organization is focused on survival in the wake of Larry Nassar. USAG is an organization run by fear and always has been. Kowtowing to special interests and insider benefits at the overall expense of the athletes, the professional members, and the overall health and safety of the sport. These practices are ultimately what allowed Larry Nassar to exist and completely corrupt nature of the decision making at USA Gymnastics.

I refused to resign because I have done nothing to warrant such a decision. The post in question was about my own life, my own experiences, and frankly, how stubborn and bullheaded I was as an athlete. If we have now deluded ourselves in gymnastics, or society in general, to the point that me saying that I occasionally needed a good butt-chewing by my coach would lead to organizational or public outcry.… then we have ALL been turned to cowards. I will not bow to the pressure of internet bullies or attorneys who have an agenda. I will continue to speak the truth. I support the athletes. I support the survivors. I wholeheartedly believe we should completely eradicate abuse of any type from our sport. I will not apologize for believing the occasional pointed correction is tantamount to abuse. It isn’t. It never has been.

On May 21st, USA Gymnastics made the decision to announce my departure on social media (after I asked them not too) and all the various internet denizens. The manner in which this was done has caused significant unfounded harm to me personally and professionally I fought tirelessly for USA Gymnastics. I wanted USAG to survive. I located and proposed a new headquarters and training site in Kansas City for USAG, which as of this release they are still pursuing (among other contributions). However, previous and current leadership within the organization continue to make decisions and take actions that hurt everyone. My reputation has been irreparably tarnished, but more importantly USAG’s accusations are hurting my family, my gym, and my athletes. Enough is enough. The professional members and athletes that make up the sport of gymnastics are not simply disposable commodities to simply use up and discard. USAG silenced me during the Larry Nassar ordeal. It is time for that to stop. Those who would argue that I am simply disgruntled are doing so to protect their own interests. It is time for the truth to be spoken and for the entire gymnastics community to have a voice. I look forward to discussing “lost” SafeSport files. I look forward to discussing the how USA Gymnastics deals with medical emergencies. I look forward to discussing all the policy failures at USA Gymnastics. I have been in gymnastics my whole life and the last ten or so inside USA Gymnastics. I have a compelling list and I have no reason to remain silent.

For those with questions, I never liked Larry Nassar and chose not to use him as my doctor. In my role as Athlete Rep I was diligent in watching for red flags with Larry Nassar and every other professional the athletes encountered. I didn’t ever see any behavior that was actionable. I assure the public that if I had I would have been the first to report it.

I have one final thing to say to USA Gymnastics: I have always supported the welfare of athletes. It was you that did not. I have always fought for what I believe was right and what I believed in. It was you that were so smitten by Five-Ring Fever and greed that you allowed these travesties to unfold. I am an open book and will gladly openly discuss both my successes and failures in any forum. It is you that continues to hide and deflect in hopes that you will somehow survive and be allowed to continue this pattern of desecrating my sport. It is you that has lost the support of nearly all, and it is you that continues to exist ONLY due to legal machinations and your continued fostering of a culture of fear.

To the athletes and coaches who have stood behind me, and even those who may disagree with me, I support each and every one of you. It is past time for us to come together and take back the control of this amazing sport and put it into the hands of the people who will truly protect the sport, its athletes, and all its stake holders.

Respectfully,
Terin Humphrey
 
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Flyaway

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I saw both FloGymnastics and GymCastic repost it on Facebook. The difference between the comments on each post is striking. Overwhelmingly the Flo commentors support her, the GymCastic ones do not.
 

Sk8ermaiden

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Her social media post would rub me the wrong way any time, but in the current climate it was reprehensible and stupid.

She was also way, way past the term length that an athlete rep is supposed to be allowed. So...not sad for her.
 

LJL07

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Well, she is disgruntled clearly and is now throwing USAG under the bus. I have to say that everything she says in that statement appears pretty accurate. Ha ha! "Lost" SafeSport files. That is STILL an ongoing issue. USAG does NOTHING unless it is a sexual abuse complaint, and even then, they are slow. While I agree with her statement, I do not like her reason or agenda for making this statement. I find it highly unlikely that she would have said a word if things hadn't ended badly for her.
 

LJL07

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I also love how she claims that in her position she would blow the whistle on anything untoward, and in the next breath is like, "Wait until I show you where the skeletons are buried." :rolleyes:
Totally. It's like, "There was nothing bad for me to report that I saw during my tenure, except I am going to tell everyone how terrible it was while I sat there and did nothing." Although I cannot wait for her to discuss all of the lost SafeSport files and buried skeletons.
 

TumbleTimes4

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Agreed @LJL07. I think she pretty much stated whether intentionally or not, that she was fine staying silent as long as she kept her job. If she was hoping to paint herself in a better light, she just made it worse.

My interest was peaked when she mentioned “lost” SS files and medical emergencies. Whatever her motivations, if it leads to more transparency and exposing things that need to be exposed, I’m all for it.
 
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Flippin'A

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I also love how she claims that in her position she would blow the whistle on anything untoward, and in the next breath is like, "Wait until I show you where the skeletons are buried." :rolleyes:
Took the words right out of my mouth. The inconsistencies in her statement are staggering.

It's the Nyman thing all over again. Happy to work with USAG until they burn her and then it's all about what a terrible organization they are. She's been there for over a decade. I find it impossible to believe that she ignored systemic issues at USAG but would have magically been the one to fix the Nassar situation if someone had told her about it. She still shows no understanding of why her facebook post was objectionable and paints herself as a victim. As with Nyman, there's no doubt in my mind that the issues she's hinted at are real, and I can only hope she actually follows through and exposes them, but at the same time I don't for a second see her as the poor little innocent she's trying to make herself out to be.
 
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LJL07

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Agreed @LJL07. I think she pretty much stated whether intentionally or not, that she was fine staying silent as long as she kept her job. If she was hoping to paint herself in a better light, she just made it worse.

My interest was peaked when she mentioned “lost” SS files and medical emergencies. Whatever her motivations, if it leads to more transparency and exposing things that need to be exposed, I’m all for it.
There are 100% lost SS files. As a matter of fact, I am personally familiar with one complaint that is small potatoes in the grand scheme of the gymnastics world, but it was just totally and unapologetically lost by the first investigator. After the lost complaint was brought to someone on the SS committee’s attention, the complaint was reopened and everyone had to go through the process a second time. This was AFTER Larry Nassar. And I just communicated with someone earlier this evening who was involved with a huge big name complaint that has been dragging on for many, many years. USAG continues to “lose” information and drag their feet. It is very true that they have no interest in changing the culture or protecting kids. They just want to protect their image at all cost. And Terin Humphrey helped protect their image. :rolleyes:
 
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