On May 8, 2018, stakeholders from across the country came together in San Francisco, CA to commit to end sexual harassment and violence in the workplace. It was an opportunity to connect and collaborate as we work to support survivors and promote workplace practices that prevent and protect workers from harassment and abuse.
To continue these efforts to collectively move forward, the Solutions Digest will provide a platform in which those working to end sexual harassment and violence can come together to learn, elevate, and connect. Every other month on the 8th, this newsletter will bring you news, best practices, and research from survivors, advocates, workers, unions, and others working to end sexual harassment and violence in the workplace. The Digest will also serve as a forum to connect and seek advice, share advocacy efforts, or cultivate partnerships with other allies across the nation.
Solutions Digest content is driven by you. While we will work to identify and share efforts, we hope that you will actively contribute to the Digest with stories, innovative practices, research, and requests for collaboration. Together, we can end sexual harassment and violence in the workplace and ensure that no one has to choose between safety and a paycheck ever again.
Linda A. Seabrook
General Counsel and Director of Workplace Safety & Equity
Solutions Summit Highlights
- Diana Gameros set the perfect tone with a beautiful and moving opening performance. A clip of her inspirational performance can be found here.
- Suzette Wright, who spoke up against epidemic harassment and intimidation she witnessed and endured as a Ford employee, reminded us that unions have a duty to support and protect their women members, too. Suzette’s brave activism continues, as she recently recounted to the New York Times on how #MeToo changed her life.
- Six Action Labs developed detailed strategies for collaborative change. Future editions of the Solutions Digest will uplift and focus on these strategies. Action Lab notes and outcomes can be found here.
- The Commitments Wall went live and can be found here. This platform will provide an ongoing real-time opportunity to learn about, lift up, support, and engage each organization’s efforts to end sexual harassment and violence in the workplace.
For more highlights from the Summit, read our blog post here: www.futureswithoutviolence.org/time-for-solutions-summit/
Solutions Spotlight: Coalition of Immokalee Workers
The Coalition of Immokalee Workers -- an internationally-recognized human rights organization based in the farmworker community of Immokalee, Florida -- won a significant victory in June of 2018 in their national Wendy's Boycott. Wendy's has refused for years to join the CIW's award-winning Fair Food Program, the country's most successful social responsibility model for preventing sexual violence in U.S. agriculture.
Three years ago, Wendy's went so far as to pull its tomato purchases from the Florida tomato industry (the birthplace of the Fair Food Program) and to shift its purchases to Mexico, where human rights abuses, including sexual assault and modern-day slavery, are as widespread as they are well-documented. However, under the intense spotlight of the Campaign for Fair Food, Wendy’s hollow claims of social responsibility in Mexico wilted, and during their 2018 Annual Shareholder meeting, Wendy's announced it would be shifting over 90% of its tomato purchases to the U.S. and Canada. For the first time, a major US retail food company repatriated its tomato purchases from Mexico in response to intense scrutiny of the horrific labor conditions in that country. This is a major victory for the farmworkers who have courageously spoken out about the sexual harassment, physical violence, and extreme poverty they personally faced while harvesting in Mexico’s fields.
Now that Wendy’s has taken the first necessary step of repatriating its tomato purchases, the CIW will continue campaigning for the company to complete the process by joining the Fair Food Program. In the words of one of CIW's prominent farmworker leaders, Nely Rodriguez: “Wendy’s is feeling the pressure built by the incredible work we are doing. Together, we know that we will ultimately bring them into the Fair Food Program.”
Policy & Practice
Gender Matters: Women Disproportionately Report Sexual Harassment in Male Dominated Instrustries (Center for American Progress)
This is why workplace harassment training is so ineffective (Think Progress)
Big brands: the missing voice in the fight to end gender-based violence at work (Open Democracy)
Even in a Field Dominated by Women, 25% of Female Educators Say #MeToo (Education Week)
Sexual harassment report calls for changes to academic culture (CNN)
Seattle City Council passes new labor standards for domestic workers (Curbed Seattle)
D.C. voters approve wage increase for restaurant workers, defying elected officials (Washington Post)
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Sexual Harassment of Women: Climate, Culture, and Consequences in Academic Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
Hegewisch, A., Deitch,C., and Murphy, E. 2011. Ending Sex and Race Discrimination in the Workplace: Legal Interventions That Push the Envelope. Washington, DC: Institute for Women's Policy Research.
- The TIME’S UP Legal Defense 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 helps defray legal and public relations costs in select cases. The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund is housed at and administered by the National Women’s Law Center Fund LLC, a subsidiary of NWLC.
- Sign up to join OUR TURN, a new collaborative effort to raise up voices of low-wage, vulnerable workers who are fighting back against sexual abuse in the workplace! http://coshnetwork.org/our-turn-pledge.
- SEIU-USWW in California is seeking help with a research project on the effectiveness of peer-to-peer training models to inform advocacy efforts around AB 2079 which would require peer-led sexual harassment and violence training in the janitorial sector. Contact Christopher Calhoun, Director of Public Affairs & Strategic Campaigns at 323-215-5068 for more information.
- Join the Workplaces Respond Team for a webinar, How Employers Can Build a Framework to Address Sexual Harassment and Violence in the Workplace, to be held Thursday August 30, from 2:00 P.M. to 3:00 P.M. ET. Register here.
- We want to hear from you! If you have programs, conferences, meetings, practices, or research you would like to share through the Solutions Digest, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Looking to partner with other stakeholders in your community, connect with researchers, or ask how others are addressing sexual harassment and violence in their workplaces? Use the announcement section to connect with allies. Email your request to: email@example.com.