Time’s Up has taken a major step to empower workers in the film industry. The organisation debuted its three-part guide to working in entertainment to educate fellow industry members on their rights and recourse when they experience harassment, not only to promote safety, but to promote a discussion of solutions. The guide is part of the much-needed change for which Time’s Up has spent the past two years advocating. It is clear, assertive, and unflinching on the rights everyone from executives and directors to the production assistants deserve.
“If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. If it seems like a red flag, it probably is. It’s okay to say ‘no,’ to speak up, and to leave situations that make you uncomfortable,” the guide’s introduction reads. “No role, job, or relationship is worth compromising your physical or emotional safety.”
The resource offers solutions for a myriad of areas in which Hollywood employees have historically been exploited, covering everything from the audition process, sex scenes, and nudity, and exactly how and to whom to report sexual misconduct and harassment.
“The entertainment industry is not a typical workplace, and so figuring out your rights and options around workplace harassment, discrimination, and misconduct can be confusing,” reads Time’s Up’s website. The first chapter of the guide covers performers’ rights under the law and SAG-AFTRA regarding nudity, intimacy, and sex scenes. The solutions it sets forth are about respect, establishing and maintaining boundaries. Many of the guidelines use the SAG-AFTRA Code of Conduct on Sexual Harassment as a jumping off point, reports Deadline.
The second chapter addresses the audition process. It educates on how to navigate chemistry reads, kissing, nudity in auditions, how to change the location of an audition, and identifying and responding to sexual harassment, discrimination, and retaliation. The final chapter details a worker’s right to report an incident, as well as actionable information on whether and how to report to an employer, a union, or state and federal authorities. The guide is free and readily available online for anyone who wishes to download it.
The guide is a result of months of consulting actors, filmmakers, union workers, production crew, organisations, and attorneys, Time’s Up said in The Hollywood Reporter. The driving force behind this guide are actors who wish that something like this existed in writing when they faced harassment, misconduct, and uncomfortable working environments.
The Time’s Up website says it best. It’s about “insisting on safety, equity, and power” and changing the gatekeepers. When everyone has the same expectations and information, power becomes more democratized, and it becomes easier for better standards to be enforced.
If you have experienced sexual violence of any kind, please visit Rape Crisis or call 0808 802 9999.