TIME’S UP: This Is Our Pearl


Have you ever studied how oysters function? They clamp their hard shells, lifelines inside, and slowly turn grit and other irritants from the ocean into fabulous pearls.

Monday, we, the women of the world, birthed a pearl larger than any mollusk could produce. After decades of irritants from the ocean of humanity – workplace harassment, discrimination, unfair pay, lack of access to health care, affordable childcare – we said, “TIME’S UP!”

As an organization, Women AdvaNCe applauds and supports the effort launched by some of the female leaders in Hollywood . We encourage you to read their entire open letter, but we find inspiration in this particular passage.

And rest assured this effort has a solid platform and operational plan that includes a legal defense fund for low-wage earning women who encounter harassment and sexual misconduct and proposed legislation to penalize companies that turn a blind eye to harassment. Additionally, the movement is urging women to wear black on the red carpet at the Golden Globes this Sunday.

What we find even more opulent about this “pearl” is that it was born out of a show of solidarity by the female farmworkers of America after the harassment by people in the entertainment industry came to light, including actions by Harvey Weinstein.

This letter represents a bridge between the sequins of Hollywood and the dust of hard labor that is a lesson for us all. Tackling the harassment and abuse experienced by generations of hard-shelled women has to be tackled from the top and the bottom. If you’ll allow me one more symbolic reference, the TIME’S UP movement is working from the Hollywood sign in the sky, but it doesn’t, and cannot stop there. The health of our “ocean” is impacted by what happens on the bottom of its floor in our local communities.

Friday one of our newest writers, Anna Lynch, will share with you her thoughts on what we can do here in North Carolina and in our own households to support this effort. Until then, we’d like to hear from you on the this campaign that we believe will grow exponentially throughout the course of this year.

What inspires us is that we are on the cusp of shaping workplace policy. It’s an election year, and we have the potential to impact midterm elections. Knowing this, I held my head a little higher when I looked at my daughters this morning. Almost a year ago, I took them to the Women’s March. They walked 17,000 steps with me and chanted that we could do better. And we are. We are.


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