Emma Watson's Donation To Time's Up Just Kickstarted The Movement For British Actors In A Major Way

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The Time's Up movement has officially made its way across the pond. As reported by the BBC, Emma Watson donated £1 million to Time's Up in order to help the UK Justice and Equality Fund reach its goal to create a new advice network. Watson also added her name to a list of 200 of her British and Irish peers who signed an open letter published on Feb. 18, similar to the one that launched the Time's Up movement in the U.S. on Jan. 1.

Shared by the Guardian, the open letter calls for an end to sexual harassment in the workplace, and addresses the pay disparity facing British women in the work force. In addition to Watson, other notable signers include Emma Thompson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Jodie Whittaker, Claire Foy, Tessa Thompson, Gwendoline Christie, and Carey Mulligan. The letter outlines the goals of the U.K.'s branch of the movement, and notes that Time's Up is so much bigger than the film and TV industry. It reads:

The letter continues,

Seeing Time's Up expand to include voices from around the globe is pivotal to its success, and that fact clearly isn't lost on the British and Irish women who are pledging to make a difference in the United Kingdom and beyond.

Perhaps the most poignant part of the open letter is the one that highlights just how important it is to challenge the idea that sexual harassment can ever be "just a joke." For far too long women have been told that dealing with unwanted comments and advancements from men is simply a part of life. However, the women of the U.K. are ready to change that idea for good. They wrote,

The letter was released to coincide with the 2018 BAFTAs, which are taking place this Sunday, Feb. 18. Stars are following in the footsteps of the actors who wore black as a sign of solidarity at the Golden Globes, by doing the same thing at the BAFTAs. Additionally, actors like Thompson are taking activists as their dates to the BAFTAs, and there are protesters on the red carpet sporting Time's Up shirts, according to the Daily Mail.

While there has been speculation that Time's Up could slow down or simply fade away, seeing members of the U.K.'s film and television industry join the movement and commit to nurturing its growth feels like proof that women have had enough of being silenced. Two months in, and Time's Up is continuing to grow and find new ways to help the people who are most vulnerable to sexual harassment and discrimination.

Thanks to Watson and her peers, it seems that the Time's Up movement is not only here to stay, it's continuing to grow and expand in ways that can only lead to a brighter tomorrow for disenfranchised workers everywhere.