wisconsin capitol
wisconsin capitol
wisconsin capitol

Open Letter to Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce Demanding It Pull Down Television Advertisement

'Take the advertisement down, and beg the victims and their family for their forgiveness. Anything less is heartless and cruel.'

One Wisconsin Now has sent the following letter to the board of directors of the Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce demanding it pull down the television advertisement running on television stations across the state of Wisconsin that exposes the identity of the victims of child sexual assault.


Members of the Board of Directors of Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce:

I write to you to implore you to remove the shameful, unethical advertisement you are currently spending $1 million to run on Wisconsin’s television stations, cable providers and radio stations.

Take the advertisement down, and beg the victims and their family for their forgiveness. Anything less is heartless and cruel.

As you know, the family of the child victims has pleaded with you to take down this advertisement, saying it is causing the family even more pain as result of your irresponsible actions.

This advertisement you have broadcast across Wisconsin exposes the identity of victims of childhood sexual assault. In your statement released to the media, you claim that information regarding the case is “publicly available.” Having gone to the Wisconsin Circuit Court Access Program, I can tell you the details you use in your unconscionable advertisement are not on this website. I would strongly challenge your definition of “publicly available.”

Your statement defending your actions also claims the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel had reported information identical to your advertisement. Nothing could be further from the truth. To the contrary, none of the newspaper’s stories, written both at the time of the case and recently, identify the relationship between the victims and the perpetrator. That is a standard practice of all responsible news outlets to shield the identity of the victims.

Admittedly, I am incredulous that the television and radio stations being paid by you to run this advertisement have jettisoned this practice to serve your disgraceful advertising needs. As the organization behind creating and paying for this compassionless advertisement, however, you are most responsible and most able to stop the re-victimization of the child victims.

There are 52 companies on the board of directors of Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce. If exposing the identities of the victims of childhood sexual assault is the depths to which you will sink in order to win a political campaign, it will be critically important that activists like One Wisconsin Now join with other organizations and members of the public from across this state to alert your members, their customers, the public and the media of your participation in this evil.

If shame is beyond your capacity, then perhaps efforts to expose your sleaze will show the victims on whom you have inflicted additional pain that there are those in Wisconsin who will stand with them against this wrong.

Attached is a list of the businesses represented on your board of directors, according to your website.

Alliant Energy Corporation, Madison
Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc., Arcadia
Associated Banc-Corp, Green Bay
Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP, Madison
Beaver Dam Area Chamber of Commerce, Beaver Dam
Belmark Inc., De Pere
Bliss Communications, Inc., Janesville
BMO Harris Bank, Brookfield
C.G. Bretting Manufacturing Company, Inc., Ashland
Campbell Wrapper Corporation, De Pere
Circle Packaging Machinery, Inc., De Pere
Dairyland Power Cooperative, La Crosse
EMCS, Inc., Milwaukee
Flexion Inc., Sun Prairie
Foley & Lardner LLP, Milwaukee
Fort HealthCare, Fort Atkinson
Grant Thornton, LLP, Appleton
Greenheck Group, Schofield
Hendricks Commercial Properties, Beloit
ITU AbsorbTech, Inc., New Berlin
J.J. Keller & Associates, Inc., Neenah
John Deere Horicon Works, Horicon
Johnson Financial Group, Racine
Kerry, Beloit
Kwik Trip, Inc., La Crosse
Lakeside Foods, Inc., Manitowoc
Mead & Hunt, Inc., Middleton
Menard, Inc., Eau Claire
Mercury Marine, Fond du Lac
Michael Best & Friedrich LLP, Madison
Milk Source LLC, Kaukauna
Modine Manufacturing Company, Racine
OEM Fabricators, Inc., Woodville
Oshkosh Corporation, Oshkosh
Prairie du Chien Area Chamber of Commerce, Prairie du Chien
Prent Corporation, Janesville
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Milwaukee
QPS Employment Group, Brookfield
Quarles & Brady LLP, Milwaukee
Robert W. Baird & Co., Inc., Milwaukee
Sargento Foods Inc., Plymouth
Seats Incorporated, Reedsburg
Seneca Foods Corporation, Janesville
Skyward, Inc., Stevens Point
Society Insurance, Fond du Lac
SSM Health Care of Wisconsin, Madison
Stoughton Trailers, LLC, Stoughton
Teel Plastics, Inc., Baraboo
Waukesha County Business Alliance, Waukesha
Waupaca Foundry Inc., Waupaca
WEC Energy Group, Milwaukee
Wells Fargo Bank, Milwaukee
WPS Health Solutions, Madison

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Scot Ross has served as Executive Director of One Wisconsin Now & the Institute since 2007.