Hollywood producers announce new sexual harassment guidelines
In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein controversy and the #MeToo movement, the Producers Guild of American announced extensive new rules Friday to clamp down on sexual harassment in Hollywood.
The rules are the result of a task force created in October to safeguard against harassment on and off the set. “Sexual harassment can no longer be tolerated in our industry or within the ranks of the Producers Guild membership,” said presidents Gary Lucchesi and Lori McCreary in a statement. “… it is our obligation to change our culture and eradicate this abuse.”
The guidelines first go about describing what is sexual harassment in Hollywood production terms (examples include quid pro quo offers of jobs in exchange for sex and creating hostile work environments with unwanted advances, jokes, or derogatory comments).
Then the PGA listed new recommendations for productions: Follow federal and state harassment laws, provide in-person sexual harassment training on all productions, offer reporting procedures for victims of harassment, listen to reports of harassment “with attention and empathy,” move quickly to address the concerns, and keep an eye out for any possible retaliation against an accuser.
In laying out a protocol for victims and witnesses, first and foremost the PGA urges that anybody who feels they are the victim of a crime to report it to authorities immediately. If the offending behavior was not an actual crime, the PGA recommends the victim first consider speaking to the person to explain why their actions made them uncomfortable. If that doesn’t work — or if they are otherwise uncomfortable doing so — then they should report the incident to the person on the production dedicated to handling harassment complaints. Also, the guidelines say if somebody is aware of another person being harassed, it’s their obligation to step up on behalf of the team member.
Concludes the guidelines: “We will see even more progress once boardrooms and corporations — as well as production offices and sets — are balanced with gender and racially diverse leaders who will hire inclusive teams as a matter of standard practice.”