Meryl Streep, Scarlett Johansson, Kerry Washington, and more lend their support to reproductive rights initiative

·2 min read
Meryl Streep, Scarlett Johansson, Kerry Washington
Meryl Streep, Scarlett Johansson, Kerry Washington

In response to the overturning of Roe V. Wade, Dr. Stacy L. Smith and the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative of the University of Southern California have announced a project which “will monitor popular entertainment content for issues related to reproductive rights, marriage equality, interracial relationships, and gun violence, and offer insights to create change.”

The initiative comes with the support of many high-profile actors and producers, including Meryl Streep, Scarlett Johansson, Kerry Washington, Julianne Moore, Tessa Thompson, Amy Schumer, Laura Dern, and more.

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“With the curtailing of reproductive rights, it is not only necessary to find legal solutions to protect marginalized communities, but it is essential to educate and inform audiences about these topics,” Smith says in a statement. “Entertainment has a unique ability to reach viewers and provide that education. Our goal is to illuminate how many opportunities there are to use storytelling as a tool to expand the conversation and create substantial attitude and policy change.”

Those in Hollywood who have lent their support include:

  • Meryl Streep

  • Scarlett Johansson

  • Kerry Washington

  • Julianne Moore

  • Tessa Thompson

  • Amy Schumer

  • Laura Dern

  • Gemma Chan

  • Eva Longoria

  • Maggie Gyllenhaal

  • Jennifer Beals

  • Mila Kunis

  • Rosario Dawson

  • Alysia Reiner

  • Jenny Slate

  • Kate Walsh

  • Emmy Rossum

  • Jurnee Smollett

  • Busy Philipps

  • Ilana Glazer

  • Rachel Bloom

  • Jameela Jamil

  • Attica Locke

  • Tembi Locke

The Annenberg Inclusion Initiative works as an academic think tank out of USC Annenberg focusing on inequality in the entertainment industry, in front of and behind the camera. Those involved with study will not only use the research finding to offer solutions, but will also launch a “reproductive rights Accelerator program” to offer financial support to undergraduate film work on the subject.

“The entertainment community plays a critical role in educating people about their sexual and reproductive health and rights, including abortion. With Roe v. Wade overturned and birth control, LGBQT+ and other rights threatened, this new Annenberg Inclusion Initiative research project will provide an invaluable tool to ensure audiences are reached with medically and legislatively accurate storytelling about these issues,” Planned Parenthood’s Caren Spruch says. “As we fight for every person’s right to bodily autonomy, working together with the Initiative and its supporters will be essential to changing the culture to achieve this goal.”