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SAG-AFTRA Head Says Sex-Harassment Reports Increasing

December 20, 2017

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

LOS ANGELES, Calif.—SAG-AFTRA is now receiving at least five complaints a day about sexual harassment, far more than it got before the revelations about film producer Harvey Weinstein’s predatory practices came out in early October. “People are feeling empowered to speak out, and there has been a significant increase in the number of people doing so,” union President Gabrielle Carteris told Variety Dec. 11. She said she’d been harassed many times while working as an actress, but was “surprised at the magnitude of the response since October.” “The calls that we are getting are coming in from across the entire spectrum,” executive director David White added. “We are aware that the simple act of naming the problem, along with having new tools to protect oneself, definitely helps to empower our members.” The union has also formed a safety commission to educate members on how to avoid and combat sexual abuse and harassment. Actors are particularly vulnerable during the audition process, White said, because “their profession is frequently dependent on their physicality and requires them to engage with others in situations where there can be an unequal balance of power and limited oversight.” Read more

December 20, 2017

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