TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund to Support Transgender Survivors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, August 14, 2018

 

CONTACT:

Kendra Barkoff, kbarkoff [at] skdknick [dot] com, 202-464-9531

michael munson, tgwarrior [at] forge-forward [dot] org, 414-559-2123

 

FORGE Awarded Grant from TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund to Support Transgender and Non-Binary Survivors of Sexual Harassment and Related Retaliation in the Workplace

Milwaukee, WI – Today, the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund announced FORGE, Inc. as the recipient of a grant to support low-wage workers who have experienced sexual misconduct or related retaliation in the workplace. FORGE will use this grant to educate transgender and non-binary individuals and allied service providers on what workplace behaviors constitute sexual harassment and retaliation and therefore can be addressed (with Time’s Up! legal assistance), via existing laws and policies. The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund, which is housed and administered by the National Women’s Law Center Fund (NWLCF), awarded eighteen (18) grants to organizations around the country to build on its commitment to support survivors of sexual harassment and retaliation across all industries and connect them to attorneys and public relations experts.

FORGE will use multiple strategies to reach low-wage transgender and non-binary workers and educate them about their options for addressing sexual harassment and retaliation. These will include: developing and disseminating a suite of Know Your Rights! materials; creating and promoting new website content and Facebook pages dedicated to the subject; conducting a social media campaign; and conducting in-person outreach and education at at least one national transgender conference. FORGE will also provide referrals and ongoing emotional and practical support to trans and non-binary survivors who contact FORGE about workplace difficulties, regardless of whether they are appropriate for referral to TIME’S Up lawyers.

“The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund believes that no worker at any job should ever have to endure abuse for a paycheck,” said Sharyn Tejani, Director of the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund. “We want all survivors to know that there are available resources to help them deal with sexual misconduct. The projects awarded today have the potential to change lives, and I could not be more excited for the work that lies ahead.”

“FORGE recognizes that many trans and non-binary individuals work in low-wage jobs.  Many tolerate sexual harassment and bias in the workplace – sometimes due to not recognizing what constitutes sexual harassment, sometimes out of fear of not being able to access other work. We are excited about this unique opportunity to partner with the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund to support trans workers in identifying sexual harassment or retaliation they might be experiencing, and guide them to trans-aware legal resources,” said michael munson, FORGE co-founder and Executive Director.

The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund received more than 120 applications for these funds.  The applications proposed a broad range of diverse public engagement projects, including those offering targeted resources for Latinx workers, Asian immigrants, transgender workers, domestic workers, farmworkers, retail workers, restaurant workers, hotel workers, poultry workers and more.

Awardees were determined based on organizations’ community ties, planned outreach to low-wage workers in target populations, demonstrated commitment to advocacy on behalf of workers’ rights—and with attention to geographic distribution across the United States and diversity in populations served.

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About FORGE

FORGE is the nation’s leading transgender anti-violence organization, working to prevent and address the violence and trauma that lead to the many health disparities (including suicidality) that affect the trans/non-binary population. FORGE was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. FORGE provides services and resources to both transgender survivors and to the service providers who serve them across the country. FORGE maintains an extensive archive of free, online trainings and publications at www.forge-forward.org and disseminates new products and policy developments through the social media platforms of Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/FORGE.trans), Twitter (https://twitter.com/FORGEforward), and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/FORGE_forward/).

 

About the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund

The TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund, which is housed at and administered by the National Women’s Law Center 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 will help defray legal and public relations costs in select cases based on criteria and availability of funds. Donations to the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund are tax deductible through the Direct Impact Fund, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization or through the National Women’s Law Center, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.  The initiative was spearheaded by actors and others in the entertainment industry, attorneys Tina Tchen and Roberta Kaplan, and top public relations professionals. Women in Hollywood came together around their own experiences of harassment and assault, and were moved by the outpouring of support and solidarity against sexual harassment from women across sectors. This inspired them to help create a Fund to help survivors of sexual harassment and retaliation in all industries—especially low-wage workers. They worked together in an historic first to design a structure that would be both inclusive and effective.

 

Printable copy: Time’s Up Grant Award Press Release (Aug. 8, 2018)