Miss Earth Guam joins other contestants in sexual harassment cla - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Miss Earth Guam joins other contestants in sexual harassment claim against sponsor

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Miss Earth Guam is speaking out on social media, joining other pageant contestants claiming a sponsor sexually harassed them at the 2018 Miss Earth International Competition in Manila. As such, the local chapter is now launching an investigation.

Emma Mae Sheedy is the reigning Miss Earth Guam 2018. For a year and half she's been preparing for her first international beauty pageant. But the pageant that took place over the weekend in the Philippines, wasn't all she expected.

"The pageant itself was absolutely amazing," she recalled. "It was really good; of course, everything you expect from any type of opportunity, it won't always be 100%." Emma is currently living in New York. KUAM News caught-up with her over the phone Friday morning, during which she said, "For the most part it's everything I wrote in my post - there were a specific sponsor that made a lot of the girls feel uncomfortable."

Naming that sponsor on Instagram, she says Amado S. Cruz from the Manila Yacht Club "became a problem for many delegates". Listing her personal encounters with Cruz writing "he grabbed my bare backside at the National Costume Competition where I was able to push him away", adding he made other girls uncomfortable, like Miss Earth Canada and Miss Earth England 2018, who've also shared their experience on social media.

 

Emma continued, "It was hard, obviously, I went to the pageant to be a role model to make a difference, and to have myself looked at as an object was heartbreaking. I did talk to the organization about what happened and they didn't do anything about it."

All pageant contestants saying they mentioned the incidents to the International Miss Earth Organization. "It's just one individual person; it's not the organization, of course there could have been actions taken 830 but I'm focused on this specific person that has been a problem for multiple years," she stated.

Amidst these allegations, the local chapter responds, saying they're launching a full investigation. Frank Santos, with the local franchise, explains they have a zero-tolerance policy for sexual assault. "The organization does not tolerate that we have zero tolerance for stuff like that even in our local events here at Miss Earth, we don't tolerate none of that - no sexual harassment, no sexual favors. It's zero for us," he promised.

In the meantime, Sheedy says one "rotten apple" won't change her dreams of being a role model, noting, "I am the first openly-gay Ms. Earth international delegate as well, so that kind of shows that I'm open with who I am. I'm open with everything that I've experienced. I just want to be a role model I want people to understand that things like this are not okay."

The Miss Earth Guam Organization is set to issue a statement on the matter soon.

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