Anita Hill made sexual harassment a national issue by testifying at the Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas in 1991. Her bravery empowered thousands of women to bring their own sexual harassment lawsuits and helped revolutionized the treatment of women in the workplace.
Today, Ms. Hill continues her mission and trailblazing efforts by fighting for institutional change to increase parity and protection for women and minorities. She leads the Hollywood Commission on Sexual Harassment and Advancing Equality in the Workplace, composed of leading executives in the entertainment industry. The committee is examining the pattern of sexual abuse in Hollywood that the #MeToo campaign has exposed since Harvey Weinstein was accused of abuse in October 2017. Ms. Hill has stated that the committee is the next step in a “long overdue journey to adopt best practices and create institutional change that fosters a culture of respect and human dignity throughout the industry.”
Ms. Hill speaks about lessons learned and progress won since her testimony. She comments on how institutions can step up to promote equality — from colleges holding students and fraternities more accountable, to companies punishing abusive employees and executives. She addresses why it’s more important than ever before to keep fighting for vigorous enforcement of the law and creative positive change within organizations. As Ms. Hill said at the 2016 Massachusetts Conference for Women, “We must raise our voices just as we did 25 years ago to say, ‘enough is enough.’” To watch her speech at this conference, click here.
As the Professor of Social Policy, Law and Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies at Brandeis University, Anita Hill is also working on a project aimed at reinvigorating Title IX. The project outlines specific, structural changes that companies, schools and professions can make to step up, embrace equality and increase opportunities for women and minorities.
Keywords: diversity, sexual harassment, assault, leadership, women in the workplace, inclusion, Title IX, income inequality, author