Hollywood women launch initiative to stop sexual harassment

Reese Witherspoon helped launch the Time’s Up campaign

More than 300 top women in Hollywood - from Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lawrence to Emma Thompson and Cate Blanchett - unveiled an initiative on Monday to tackle pervasive sexual harassment in workplaces, calling special attention to their "sisters" in less-than-glamorous blue-collar jobs.

The campaign was brought into the public eye on Monday with full-page adverts in the Times, which helped expose allegations of abuse against Harvey Weinstein, and Spanish-language newspaper La Opinion.

The women said they are hoping to widen the attention being paid to Hollywood's scourge of sexual harassment and discrimination into a cultural shift.

The letter acknowledges the privilege of Hollywood women, who have seen their own industry reckon with harassment in recent months, and expresses solidarity with workers who lack the resources to hold perpetrators accountable.

With an explicit thank you to those women for their call and support, the organizers from the entertainment industry behind the "Time's Up" effort say it's imperative to elevate the struggles of all working women.

One of Time's Up major aspects is a legal defense fund for which the organization is now soliciting donations via a GoFundMe.

Several females in the industry have donated to the legal defense fund, including the incomparable Taylor Swift, who faced her who sexual harassment trial back in August.

The fund will be housed at and administered by the National Women's Law Center, a women's rights legal organization, and managed by Christina M. Tchen, former Chief of Staff to Michelle Obama.

Other Time's Up members include the actresses Ashley Judd, Eva Longoria, America Ferrera, Natalie Portman, Rashida Jones, Emma Stone and Kerry Washington.

Drafting of legislation to punish companies that tolerate sexual harassment and to discourage nondisclosure agreements in such cases.

Time's Up also is backing the movement for women to wear black, in solidarity with those who have been sexually harassed, at Sunday's Golden Globes ceremony.

It also calls for "gender inequality and the imbalance of power" to be addressed, stressing the need for more women to gain positions of authority and parity of pay.

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