On March 3, 2022, U.S. president Joe Biden signed into law the ban on forced arbitration in sexual assault and harassment cases, prohibiting companies from requiring employees filing such claims to submit to private adjudication proceedings. Former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson (played by Nicole Kidman in Bombshell) has been one of the biggest proponents of the bill, entitled, the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Act, which gives employees a choice of court to pursue sexual misconduct claims or, proceed through arbitration. Read the law here.
While small victories shall be celebrated, other matters reflect & regroup, including the Time’s Up organization, which announced last fall that it will rebuild its “structure, strategy, and staff,” with departing staff leaving on March 1. A group that stood for accountability and systematic change in the workplace free of gender-based discrimination, those still involved are hopeful that this needed reset will identify room for improvement and growth. Earlier last year, several board members and the group’s CEO resigned, leaving the organization in transition. For anyone who has ever served in the non-profit sector (we have), this is an understandable pivot to better serve those, for whom it was created: survivors of harassment & discrimination.
metoo. is another group dedicated to supporting survivors of sexual violence heal. Last year, we shared a podcast in which founder Tarana Burke was interviewed by Brené Brown for her Spotify show, Unlocking Us. In an interview with WABE Atlanta (talk radio), CEO of the international movement, Dani Ayers, opens up about the “biggest misconceptions” about metoo., including how Hollywood has hampered rather than helped it gain traction among those who need it: survivors of sexual violence (with an emphasis on BIPOC and LGTBQ+ persons). Listen to her interview here, on Closer Look.