Culture&Arts

British actresses demand end to sexual harassment ahead of the Baftas

British actresses demand end to sexual harassment ahead of the Baftas

Emma Watson, Keira Knightley, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Jodie Whittaker, Saoirse Ronan, and Sophie Okonedo are among the stars to have signed it.

Numerous industry's biggest names are set to show solidarity with Time's Up by wearing black at tonight's ceremony.

Aside from Watson's exceptional donation, Tom Hiddleston and Keira Knightley are among the names listed on the official Go Fund Me page for donations of £10,000 (€13,000).

Meanwhile, 190 leading female members of the United Kingdom and Ireland entertainment industry signed an open letter titled "Sisters, this is our moment to say Time's Up".

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It says high-profile stars "need to use our power as communicators and connectors to shift the way society sees and treats us". "We need to examine the kind of womanhood our industry promotes and sells to the world".

It reads: "As we approach the Baftas - our industry's time for celebration and acknowledgment, we hope we can celebrate this tremendous moment of solidarity and unity across borders by coming together and making this movement worldwide".

Women attending the Bafta Awards to be held this evening at the Royal Albert Hall in London plan to wear black on the red carpet. Perhaps Time's Up seems a million miles away to you - started by a group of women with privilege. "With our collective power, we can galvanize others".

"If you have said "time's up", if the stories you have read in the papers have resonated and distressed you - join us in shifting the dial", the statement concludes. Among the actions taken was an open letter released Sunday featuring signatures from Watson, Naomie Harris, Olivia Colman and 187 more voices demanding an end to harassment, discrimination and abuse. "This is your moment too".

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The letter calls for an end to harassment and abuse due to an "imbalance of power" across all industries as well as highlighting that the gender pay gap for women in their 20s in Britain is now "five times greater than it was six years ago".

Stars, led in part by Gemma Arterton, chose to wear black to the event to show their support for the Time's Up and #MeToo campaigns, just like the attendees at the Golden Globes did last month (Jan18).

The stars of film, TV and stage have also joined forces with more than 160 activists, academics and service providers, to launch the Justice and Equality Fund which will aim to resource a network of support and advocacy organisation projects across the UK.

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