Friends star David Schwimmer launches campaign to fight sexual harassment

Priya Joshi
Friends star David Schwimmer launches campaign to fight sexual harassment

Friends star David Schwimmer has launched a new campaign to raise awareness of sexual harassment.

The campaign titled '#ThatsHarassment,' comprises six short films produced by Schwimmer, which portray re-enactments of women's real-life experiences.

The actor has personally undertaken the important initiative to warn women of the dangers of sexual predators, after revealing that "every woman" in his life had been a victim of sexual harassment.

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Speaking to Cosmopolitan magazine, he explained: "I grew up with stories of sexual harassment from my mom. Every woman in my family, in my life, has been harassed, except my daughter, thank god, who's only six."

The actor/director said that for many women who have been consistently subjugated and disrespected throughout their life, it might be difficult to recognise when they are being sexually harassed.

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"When you've been objectified your entire life and become accustomed to being a second-class citizen in many, many ways - constantly told that you aren't worth the same as men, basically, and that your body comes first, or what you look like comes first - it makes a lot more sense to me that a lot of women don't even recognise when they're being harassed," he explained.

"Because you spend your whole life not being treated with the kind of respect that men are automatically given."

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The short films - titled The Actor, The Boss, The Coworker, The Doctor, The Photographer and The Politician - highlight the different ways in which a woman can encounter harassment in everyday life.

In one of the films Schwimmer portrays the office boss, who makes unwanted advances towards a young employee. Other actors who have leant their support to the project are Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon, Shameless actress Emmy Rossum and House of Cards star Michael Kelly.

Sharing the videos on Instagram Schwimmer's wife, artist Zoe Buckman, expressed her pride in the actor for taking the bold initiative to raise awareness of the sexual harassment and abuse of women in everyday life.

"Incredibly proud of this guy, and all the talented artists who worked on a series of short films about sexual harassment... #thatsHarassment drops today and is both powerful and painfully relatable @sigalavin @_schwim_ @milk @mazdackrassi @zaziebeetz," she wrote.

The powerful campaign has won praise from women's organisations and members of the public on social media.

See the #ThatsHarassment Facebook page for more information.

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