You would have to be living under a rock not to know that sexual harassment and abuse in Hollywood has been front page news. It seems like every day, there’s a new name associated with this heinous act. It is also no secret that many women in all industries and professions have experienced this abusive treatment and are paid less than their male counterparts. Both of these important issues have been swept under the rug for too many years, and with the help of #MeToo Tarana Burke and Hollywood star power, the Times Up movement was created.
Officially ushered in by the Golden Globes, #TimesUp is taking a stand. Spearheaded by 300 women in TV, film, and theater, it is a wake up call to the world that we aren’t going to take it anymore. Per the official Time’s Up website, “The clock has run out on sexual assault, harassment and inequality in the workplace. It’s time to do something about it”.
Yes, it is about time.
This movement isn’t just for women in Hollywood and high up places. This is for every woman who works and has been paid less wages because they are a woman. It is for the girl who will one day work and who will one day have to fight to get her equal share.
Working moms, we also can add our voices to #TimesUp and do what we can to champion women’s right to be paid her fair share AND do so in an environment that is free of sexual harassment and abuse. In fact there are 7 ways working moms can help support the #TimesUp movement. I am sharing them below.
Advocate for one another
At work, you may see the women who are your coworkers as your rival(s), but it doesn’t have to be that way. Separately, the two of you may be a force to be reckoned with, but together, the two or more of you are unstoppable. Champion one another. Speak up for one another. Stand in unity and advocate for each other whenever you can. A united front is always stronger than divided parts.
Report bad behavior
When you see behavior that is negative and poor judgment in the office, say something about it. Don’t be quiet. Take notes and keep a record.
Recommend female colleagues
Is your job hiring? Do you know a woman in your circle who would be perfect for the role? Recommend her for the job and do what you can to get in for an interview. We’ve got to work together to lift one another up as much as possible.
Toot your own horn
As women, many of us like to play it small. We do this to a fault, as our male counterparts are out there shooting their shots and applying for positions they aren’t even qualified for because they can. To this, we have to assert ourselves. Toot your own horn unabashedly and don’t downplay your accomplishments.
Our girls are watching
Don’t only do this for the culture, but also do it for the girls who are coming up behind us. Our daughters and nieces who are watching deserve to inherit a world better than the one we were left with. Our fight today is their win tomorrow. Have conversations with them about what is going on and why it is important that you fight for the cause.
Even if it is for a seat in the city council or for the Board of Education, voting helps. Back those with the same ideals as you and who champion women’s rights, equal pay, and the right to work in a harassment free workplace. Those “small” elections make way for the bigger elections, so every vote helps.
Rep your clique! Attend events and rallies in your area that support women and your mission. Sport your Time’s Up button and t-shirt and your #MeToo swag with pride. Show up in numbers. Work to get men to show up too, as we need their support in this fight as well.
Yes, working dads, this is your fight too!
Hollywood may be thousands of miles away from your workplace, but that doesn’t mean that their spotlight and amplification of these issues is in vain. Let’s use this as an opportunity to do what is right and fight for everyone who experiences abuse in the workplace or lesser pay regardless of their sexual orientation. Their issues are our issues, too.
We’ve got work to do!
Photo credit: Heavy, Essence, and Shonda Rhimes Instagram.