The New York Times reported on January 1 that 300 prominent women actors, agents, writers, directors, producers and entertainment executives have formed an initiative to combat sexual harassment in Hollywood and blue-collar workplaces nationwide. The group – which includes actresses America Ferrera, Eva Longoria, and Reese Witherspoon; lawyers Nina L. Shaw and Tina Tchen; and producer Shonda Rhimes – has already raised $13 million of its $15 million goal.
The initiative includes:
- A legal defense fund to help less privileged women – like those in blue-collar professions – protect themselves from sexual misconduct and the financial and career fallout that come of reporting it.
- Sponsoring legislation to penalize companies that tolerate ongoing harassment and to discourage the use of nondisclosure agreements, which make it difficult for women to sue for sexual harassment.
- Continuing the drive to achieve gender parity at studios and talent agencies.
- Women walking the red carpet at the Golden Globes have been asked to wear black in a show of solidarity.