Times Up image

300 women in Hollywood launch initiative to fight sexual harassment of all women

Looking for signs of hope in 2018? 300 Hollywood women just launched Times Up, a massive, multi-pronged initiative to fight systemic sexual harassment — including a $13 million legal defense fund designed to support working-class women like janitors, restaurant workers, nurses, and farmworkers who don’t have the resources famous women do to speak up. 

Here’s who that money could help: the female restaurant workers harassed by the manager who controls their shifts and paycheck; the hotel housekeepers who are flashed by guests who know the hotel won’t do anything about it; the seventy-five percent of women who reported harassment who were retaliated against for speaking up.

Oh, and remember the 700,000 women farm workers who wrote a letter of support to Hollywood women in November? The Hollywood A-listers responded in the New York Times and La Opinion, a Spanish-language paper, pledging to have their back in this fight.

As Dana pointed out last year, actresses finally being believed isn’t going to just “trickle down” to working-class women abused by their bosses on the night-shift. But now, some of the most famous women behind the #MeToo movement are leveraging their power and wealth to help all working women. Now this is what solidarity looks like.

The Times Up initiative will also push for legislation to limit non-disclosure agreements that silence victims and to hold the companies who tolerate widespread harassment. This year, we’re not just taking aim at the predators—we’re taking down the systems that let them get away with it.

Read more from the New York Times or at the newly launched Times Up website.

Sejal Singh is a columnist at Feministing, where she writes about educational equity, labor, and reproductive justice. Sejal is a Policy and Advocacy Coordinator for Know Your IX, a national campaign to end gender-based violence in schools, where she has led several state and federal campaigns for student survivors' civil rights. In the past, Sejal led LGBT rights campaigns for the Center for American Progress. Today, she is a student at Harvard Law School and a frequent speaker on LGBTQ rights and civil rights in schools.

Sejal Singh is a law student and columnist at Feministing, writing about educational equity, labor, and reproductive justice.

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