Hollywood Stars Front Campaign Against Sexual Harassment

Mireya Acierto  FilmMagic Christopher Polk  Getty Images JB Lacroix WireImage

The group's members include actresses Ashley Judd, Eva Longoria, America Ferrera, Natalie Portman, Rashida Jones, Emma Stone, Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon; TV showrunners Shonda Rhimes and Jill Soloway; and Universal Pictures chairwoman Donna Langley.

The women announced the launch with a lengthy letter of solidarity published as a full-page ad in the New York Times and the Spanish-language paper La Opinion on Monday.

Along with helping victims, the campaign calls for more women in positions of leadership and power across industries. Rhimes told the New York Times.

Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Margot Robbie and Jennifer Aniston are among hundreds of Hollywood women who have formed an anti-harassment coalition called Time's Up. The group rapidly expanded and now includes meetings and workshops for participants in NY and London.

The open letter opens with "Dear sisters" and closes 'in solidarity'.

This is a moment of solidarity, not a fashion moment.

"For years, we've sold these awards shows as women, with our gowns and colours and our lovely faces and our glamour", Longoria added.

Time's Up has described the letter as "powerful", and said it will focus on lifting the "voices, power, and strength of women working in low-wage industries where the lack of financial stability makes them vulnerable".

The initiative, dubbed Time's Up, caps a year in which the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct scandal touched off a deluge of allegations that brought down powerful men in entertainment, politics and the media, prompting companies, government agencies and even the USA federal court system to re-examine harassment policies.

A drive to reach gender parity at studios and talent agencies that has already begun making headway.

While Time's Up plans to structure itself as a decentralised organisation with no formal hierarchy but established traditions, it plans to forge alliances with similarly focused organisations, among them 50/50 by 2020, a group that aims for equal gender representation in U.S. boardrooms by 2020. It will be housed and administrated by the National Women's Law Center, and now has more than $13 million in donations.

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