The #MeToo campaign needs to focus on the power of the law

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We need to educate people about their rights, but also support them in seeking legal actions. But taking a legal action can be complex and expensive for an average person.

Gloria Allred is an American women’s rights attorney. She is a fearless advocate for justice & equality. The lawyer recently told  Financial Times reporter that we have reached “the tipping point” in the #MeToo campaign.

Women's march
#MeToo era

Next stage

Need to bring awareness collectively. Raise funds for the victims and bring legal justice for them. We can fundamentally change the way our culture deals with discrimination. In some places this is happening to some extent. We have seen the domino effect where powerful men are now vulnerable.

Women came forward, and gave space and confident for other women to do the same. They are uplifiting each another. Their stories won’t bring justice but it will create awareness. Unfortunately in the past no alleged perpetrator has faced criminal charges. But the role of social media and digital space has created solidarity and helped tip the balance back to women. This support gives power to the survivors.

Law 

The most important thing is to educate women about their rights and the next step is to help them enforce those rights. Most importantly, the law needs to protect these women who speak out about unacceptable discriminatory conduct and by making sure that powerful people are not silencing these victims because these power people and organisation has done this in the past. The law needs to stop this. Legislating this movement is a big solution.

Workplace laws

More women are speaking up. But there is no law to protect them after speaking up. There should be codified law to prevent harm and to protect them further. Legislation is one solution but power needs to be built into the workplace. Employment contracts should include clauses that protect females and to allow them to work in a safe environment. If a women speaks up she should not feel unsafe at her workplace instead she should feel secure and comfortable.

Founder of #MeToo campaign Tarana Burke

Founder of the MeToo Campaign
Tarana Burke is a civil rights activist from The Bronx, New York who founded the Me Too movement

She recently said  “The women of color, trans women, queer people—our stories get pushed aside and our pain is never prioritized,” said Burke, a survivor of sexual violence. “We don’t talk about indigenous women. Their stories go untold.”

“What I realized in the last year is that people are OK when you’re talking about the big, scary bad guy,” Burke said, rattling off the names of “big boogymen” public figures who have been accused of sexual misconduct, including Harvey Weinstein and R. Kelly.

“But when we start talking about . . . the good guy who’s an ally to women, who looks out for everybody, who’s a stand-up person, but maybe behaves in a way that is too permissive, then it’s a problem,” she added. “The reality is if we want to really look toward ending sexual violence, we have to examine all of our behavior.

“You have millions of people walking around, saying my life has been adversely affected by this. We need culture change,”

That culture change should be in the shape of legislation and policies for the victims.

 

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