Ashton Kutcher resigns from anti-child sex abuse organization following backlash of Danny Masterson letters
Actor Ashton Kutcher has stepped down from his role as chairman of the board for his anti-child sex abuse organization Thorn.
The organization posted the letter to its blog on Friday; the letter itself was dated on Thursday.
The resignation comes days after Kutcher and his wife, actress Mila Kunis, received backlash for writing character letters on behalf of fellow “That ’70s Show” actor Danny Masterson before he was sentenced for rape this week.
The couple have since apologized for writing the letters.
“After my wife and I spent several days of listening, personal reflection, learning, and conversations with survivors and the employees and leadership at Thorn, I have determined the responsible thing for me to do is resign as Chairman of the Board, effectively immediately,” Kutcher wrote. “I cannot allow my error in judgment to distract from our efforts and the children we serve.”
Time was the first to report news of the move by the actor. He and his ex-wife Demi Moore started Thorn in 2012 after learning about child sex trafficking in Cambodia.
“As you know, I have worked for 15 years to fight for people who are sexually exploited. Victims of sexual abuse have been historically silenced and the character statement I submitted is yet another painful instance of questioning victims who are brave enough to share their experiences,” the actor’s letter continued. “This is precisely what we have all worked to reverse over the last decade.”
The “Dude, Where’s My Car?” actor then apologized to the victims of sexual abuse and the organization itself.
“The mission must always be the priority and I want to offer my heartfelt apology to all victims of sexual violence and everyone at Thorn who I hurt by what I did. And to the broader advocacy community, I am deeply sorry.”
He ended his letter by commending Thorn for its “tireless advocacy and dedication to the cause.”
“I remain proud of what we have accomplished in the past decade and will continue to support Thorn’s work.”
Just last week, Masterson was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison for raping two women.
The judge sentenced the actor after rejecting a defense motion for a new trial. The sentence was the maximum allowed by law. It means Masterson will be eligible for parole after serving 25 1/2 years, but can be held in prison for life.