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- Will the WIF Help Line help me get an attorney?
The WIF Help Line can refer you to an employment attorney for a free consultation. Attorneys on the WIF Help Line panel are licensed to practice in California, New York, or Georgia. Typically, you must speak with an attorney who is licensed in the state in which the incident of harassment occurred. At this time, our referral services do not serve other states.
A referral for consultation is no guarantee that the attorney can take on your case. If you and the attorney determine that you can work together, the attorney can either provide up to 10 hours of pro bono legal services or take your case on contingency.
Each Help Line caller can receive up to three attorney referrals. We provide one attorney referral per call, and if for any reason you or the attorney determine you’re not a good fit, you can call the Help Line back for another attorney referral.
Once a caller reaches out to an attorney for a consultation, the attorney will conduct a conflict check. WIF Help Line Advocates are unable to perform a conflict check on your behalf. WIF does not guarantee any specific outcome through our legal referrals. It is the responsibility of the caller to determine whether the attorney is the right fit for your needs.
- I don’t want to pursue legal action. Can I call the Help Line?
Yes. Help Line Advocates are here for you regardless of whether or not you want to talk to a lawyer. We are available to listen when you need someone to talk to, to give referrals to mental health and community-based resources, and to support you in making whatever choices that you feel are best for you.
- I’m not sure if what I experienced counts as sexual harassment. Can I still call the Help Line?
Yes. We’re here to support you and validate your experience. While Help Line Advocates cannot give advice on your specific situation, we can help you understand definitions of what counts as harassment and discrimination, and point you to reliable sources of information about the law in your state. If you’re unsure whether what you experienced is legally actionable, you can discuss that over a free consultation with one of our attorneys.
- I don’t want to go into detail or name names. Can I still get resources from the Help Line?
Yes. You don’t need to tell us any details about what happened in order to receive referrals and support. It can be difficult to retell your story. You can always choose to give us a pseudonym or not share your name or other personal information with the Help Line.
- I didn’t experience sexual harassment, but I was harassed, discriminated against, or retaliated against while working in entertainment. Can you help me?
Yes. In 2022, we are beginning to provide referrals to people who have experienced harassment, retaliation, or discrimination while working in entertainment on the basis of protected categories as outlined by the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
- I’m not an actor, and I’m not involved in production. I work for an entertainment company in security / food service / custodial / maintenance / admin / accounting, etc. Can I call the Help Line?
Yes, the Help Line offers resources and support, including referrals to pro bono legal services, low-fee therapy, and free support groups, to anyone who has experienced harassment, abuse, or discrimination while working in the entertainment industry, whether it was of a sexual nature or on the basis of legally protected categories such as race, gender identity, sexual identity, disability status, and others.
- Is there anyone at the Help Line who can speak Spanish? ¿Hay algiuen en la Línea de Ayuda que habla español?
Yes, the Help Line does offer Spanish-language services during select hours. Please call us at (855) WIF-LINE and ask to speak with a Spanish specialist. We will return your call as soon as possible.
Sí, la línea de ayuda ofrece servicios en español durante determinadas horas. Llámenos al (855) WIF-LINE y solicite hablar con un especialista en español. Nosotros le devolveremos la llamada tan pronto como sea posible.
- I’m not a woman. Can I call the Help Line?
We actively support people of all genders including trans people, non-binary, gender non-conforming, and cis folks.
- I didn’t experience harassment myself, but I saw it happen to someone else and I don’t know what to do. Can I call the Help Line?
Yes, our advocates can help family, friends, allies, and bystanders talk through what they have witnessed, how to best support their colleague, friend, or loved one, and provide information about coping with vicarious trauma. Please note that we may not be able to provide referrals without speaking directly to the person impacted.
For information regarding bystander resources, please visit Right To Be for free bystander intervention workshops.
- Are the Help Line’s resources free?
Speaking with a Help Line Advocate is always free; however, you may be provided with resources or referrals outside of WIF which may carry their own fees. While our Advocates will do their best to explain known associated costs for external resources, please keep in mind that we may not always know the exact costs due to differences in insurance plans and providers.
- Can I still get help if it’s been a long time since the harassment/assault?
Yes. You can call our Help Line for emotional and mental health support no matter how long it’s been since the harassment or assault occurred. General information on statutes of limitations by state can be found on the RAINN website, but for information about how statutes of limitations apply to your situation, we recommend speaking to an attorney.
- I haven’t told anyone what happened, and I don’t know what to do.
Help Line Advocates are here to listen and talk with you about options. For many of our callers, we are the first people they speak to about an incident. Our Advocates can talk with you about legal and emotional resources to support you in figuring out what next steps you might want to take.
- Is the Help Line confidential?
Yes, all calls are kept confidential among the WIF Help Line staff and within our system. You don’t need to share detailed information in order to receive referrals. The purpose of the Help Line is to provide resources and referrals, therefore, we keep limited information on record. There are a few rare exceptions to confidentiality, which includes if we receive a subpoena or are otherwise required by law to share any information, such as if you or anyone else is in any immediate physical danger, or you tell us that a minor, elder, or dependent adult has been harmed. In these cases, we may need to notify appropriate authorities.
- Can you help me go public with my story?
The decision to go public is very personal and unique to each individual. Although the WIF Help Line staff cannot directly help you go public with your story, we can talk with you about emotional support resources that may be helpful no matter what you decide. Times Up Legal Defense Fund through the National Women’s Law Center does offer some media and storytelling assistance in limited cases.
- Can you help me even if I’m not in the entertainment industry, but my abuser/perpetrator is?
Yes. Generally, the WIF Help Line supports people with incidents of harassment, discrimination, and misconduct that happens in a professional setting in the entertainment industry. Depending on your situation, we may be able to offer support or we may refer you to a resource that is more appropriate.
- Can you help me even if I left the entertainment industry?
Yes. We know that for many people, experiences with harassment, discrimination, and misconduct can contribute to a survivor leaving their job and/or the industry. If what you experienced happened within the industry, we can provide you with support and resources, even if you are no longer in it.
- What are WIF Support Spaces?
The WIF Help Line provides free virtual support groups to WIF members who identify as women or non-binary. These therapist-led support spaces are intended to provide emotional support in community with others who are facing similar issues. In the year year, WIF has offered the following spaces for entertainment workers: Black Member Support Space, for Black entertainment workers to process and get support with the intersections of racism and sexism in the screen industries; Coping in Quarantine, a space to process the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their lives; and Survivors in Community, a space for people dealing with sexual harassment and misconduct in the industry. If you are interested in learning more and/or want to join these spaces, please complete the interest form and a staff member will be in contact with you shortly. Please note that all Support Spaces have limited capacity, so we cannot guarantee admittance to any group.