Movie and TV heavyweights including Oprah Winfrey, Meryl Streep, Natalie Portman and Lena Dunham are among those to sign an open letter calling for action against gender inequality.
The 140 signatories from the entertainment arena are putting political leaders “on notice” in the letter which is spearheaded by international charity ONE. Also among those to sign are “Black Panther” stars Letitia Wright and Chadwick Boseman, Reese Witherspoon, Ryan Reynolds, Amy Schumer, Issa Rae, Michael Sheen, Thandie Newton and Natalie Dormer.
The 140 signatories call for a commitment to help every girl get an education and for leaders to use their power to deliver “historic changes for women.” The letter describes poverty as sexist and says, “We won’t stand by while the poorest women are overlooked.”
The campaign — which hopes to attract many more signatories — has also been endorsed by prominent names outside the entertainment biz, including former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, Chelsea Clinton and Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington.
According to a World Economic Forum report from last year, the equality gap between men and women would take 100 years to close at its current rate.
The letter reads:
“Dear World leaders,
We’re putting you on notice.
For 130 million girls without an education. For one billion women without access to a bank account. For 39,000 girls who became child brides today. For women everywhere paid less than a man for the same work.
There is nowhere on earth where women have the same opportunities as men, but the gender gap is wider for women living in poverty.
Poverty is sexist. And we won’t stand by while the poorest women are overlooked.
You have the power to deliver historic changes for women this year. From the G7 to the G20; from the African Union to your annual budgets; we will push you for commitments and hold you to account for them. And, if you deliver, we will be the first to champion your progress.
We won’t stop until there is justice for women and girls everywhere.
Because none of us are equal until all of us are equal.”
Source: Andreas Wiseman, Deadline
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