ENTERTAINMENT
21/02/2018 8:54 PM IST | Updated 23/02/2018 4:31 AM IST

94 Percent Of Hollywood Women Say They've Been Harassed Or Assaulted

A new report from USA Today shows just how rampant sexual misconduct is in the entertainment industry. 

A survey the newspaper conducted in partnership with Women in Film and Television, The Creative Coalition, and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center found that 94 percent of women in Hollywood have been sexually harassed or assaulted while working. Most of the women said the offensive behavior was perpetrated by an older person in a position of power. 

USA Today surveyed 843 women who work in the industry, including producers, directors, writers, actors, about their experiences with sexual misconduct in the wake of the #MeToo movement. A questionnaire was sent via email to members of Women in Film and Television and the Creative Coalition between Dec. 4.  and Jan. 14. 

Of those women, 87 percent said they had experienced “unwelcome sexual comments, jokes or gestures” at least once, and 75 percent said they had witnessed other women experience “unwanted sexual comments.” Sixty-four percent said they had been propositioned for a sexual act or relationship, and 21 percent reported they had been forced to perform a sexual act.  

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A guest on the BAFTA's red carpet wears a Time's Up pin in support of the anti-sexual misconduct initiative. 

One in four women said they reported inappropriate conduct to their superiors, but only 28 percent of those said their workplace improved after reporting. 

One-third of the women surveyed said they weren’t sure whether something that happened to them was sexual harassment. 

Because the survey respondents were self-selected, the results may not be “scientifically representative” of the entire entertainment industry, the report noted. 

Still, the findings are “credible and important,” Anita Raj, director of the Center for Gender Equity and Health at the University of California, San Diego, medical school, told USA Today.

“The percentages are higher than what we typically see for workplace abuses, but we know there is variation by the type of workplace,” Raj said. “But it makes sense to me that we would see higher numbers” in the entertainment industry.

The industry’s reckoning with misconduct has already taken down some big names, like Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and Matt Lauer. In January, a group of women in Hollywood created the Time’s Up initiative to combat their industry’s systemic problem with sexual harassment and assault. 

Head over to USA Today to read the full report. 

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