In just over one month, the Time’s Up movement continues to build momentum, raising $20 million for the initiative’s legal defense fund.
During a panel discussion at the 2018 MAKERS Conference on Monday, the fund’s lawyer, Tina Tchen, who previously worked as Chief of Staff to former First Lady Michelle Obama, disclosed the initiative’s early success, all thanks to the help of 20,000 donors.
“From $5 to millions of dollars, it’s been an amazing outpouring of support,” Tchen said, adding that over “200 lawyers” have since signed up.
Explaining the issue of both men and women needing legal defense help against harassment in the workplace does not just include Hollywood: “We have had over 1,000 requests for help in a month, so the need is clearly there from all industries – farm workers, hotel workers, steel workers.”
Moderated by film director Ava DuVernay, the panel discussion included writer and director Jill Soloway, actress Rashida Jones, as well as Natalie Portman, who opened up about the impact of the movement helping women come together.
“It’s been really incredible to gather actresses,” she said. “We’re usually the only woman at work, so like many other industries we walk onto a nearly all-male set and we’re usually alone and we rarely get to interact with each other.”
She added, “The power of just all being in a room together and sharing our experiences and realizing how much we’ve been endangered by being isolated, by being the only woman in the work environment… it’s really, really powerful.”
The discussion also included director Melina Matsoukas, attorney Nina Shaw and agent Maha Dakhil, who added, “I like to think that Time’s Up is born of a collective consciousness.”