The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund awarded $750,000 in grants today to support 18 nonprofit organizations across the country serving low-wage workers who have experienced sexual harassment and related retaliation in the workplace. The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund, which is housed and administered by the National Women’s Law Center Fund (NWLCF), awarded these grants to build on the Fund’s central commitment to support survivors of sexual harassment and retaliation across all industries and connect them to attorneys and public relations experts.
The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund received more than 120 applications for these funds. The applications proposed a broad range of diverse and compelling public engagement projects—including offering targeted resources for Latinx workers, Asian immigrants, transgender workers, domestic workers, farmworkers, retail workers, restaurant workers, hotel workers, poultry workers and more.
“We are thrilled to support organizations that are helping the most vulnerable workers fight back against sexual harassment,” said Fatima Goss Graves, co-founder of the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund and President and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center.“Sexual misconduct in the workplace has been allowed to thrive unchecked for too long—and low-wage workers and women of color have faced the brunt of this abuse and not known where to turn. The awardees’ inventive strategies to educate workers about their rights are key to combatting this scourge.”
Awardees were selected based on organizations’ community ties, planned outreach to low-wage workers in target populations, and demonstrated commitment to advocacy on behalf of workers’ rights—with attention to geographic distribution across the United States and diversity among the populations served. The selected projects will use a wide range of innovative tools and strategies to support low-wage workers, including leadership trainings, small worker-led meetings, radio shows, comic books, videos, apps, webinars, and social and traditional media. Each grant ranges from $35,000 – $50,000.
“The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund believes that no worker at any job should ever have to endure abuse for a paycheck,” said Sharyn Tejani, Director of the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund. “We want all survivors to know that there are available resources to help them deal with sexual misconduct. The projects awarded today have the potential to change lives, and I could not be more excited for the work that lies ahead.”
The Latino Community Fund (LCF Georgia) and the Lifting Latinx Voices program of the Feminist Women’s Health Center will work on Spanish materials, train a number of health promoters and community workers in five counties and launch an educational video with a lens inclusive of Trans-Latinx and LGTBQ issues.
The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund, which is housed at and administered by the National Women’s Law Center Fund, connects those who experience sexual misconduct including assault, harassment, abuse and related retaliation in the workplace or in trying to advance their careers with legal and public relations assistance. The Fund will help defray legal and public relations costs in select cases based on criteria and availability of funds. Donations to the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund are tax deductible through the Direct Impact Fund, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization or through the National Women’s Law Center, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The initiative was spearheaded by actors and others in the entertainment industry, attorneys Tina Tchen and Roberta Kaplan, and top public relations professionals. Women in Hollywood came together around their own experiences of harassment and assault, and they were moved by the outpouring of support and solidarity against sexual harassment from women across sectors. This inspired them to help create a Fund to help survivors of sexual harassment and retaliation in all industries—especially low-wage workers. They worked together in an historic first to design a structure that would be both inclusive and effective.