Angelina Jolie, one of the most powerful actresses in Hollywood, has come forward to talk about sexual harassment in the workplace. The actress, who is facing relationship rumors after his split with Brad Pitt, delivered a keynote speech at the 2017 United Nation Peacekeeping Defense Ministerial Conference held in Vancouver, British Columbia, on November 15. Her speech mainly focused on the prevention and punishment of sexual violence, and how to integrate gender perspectives into peacekeeping.
In the last few weeks, major Hollywood entertainment news has one story; how those who hold power in Tinsel Town have reportedly sexually abused their younger colleagues. Sexual harassment in the entertainment industry is not new, but the latest reports have raised several eyebrows. Dozens of women have reportedly accused Harvey Weinstein, a prominent film producer, of sexual assault, or rape, or sexual harassment. Apart from Weinstein, House of Cards star Kevin Spacey has also been accused of making sexual advances to actor Anthony Rapp in 1986. So far, Weinstein denied any non-consensual sex, and Spacey has stated that he would be seeking “evaluation and treatment” for his behavior.
Even Jolie once said that she had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein. Brad Pitt’s ex-wife stated during her recent interview that during the release of Playing by Heart in the late ’90s, the acclaimed producer made unwanted advances toward her.
“I had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein in my youth, and as a result, chose never to work with him again and warn others when they did. This behavior towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable,” she said in an email addressed to the New York Times.
As a result of which, she chose never to work with him again and even warned others of the same.
During her keynote speech, she stated that sexual violence is everywhere and it happens so often that people just let go of the crimes against women. She said the crimes were “depicted as a minor offense by someone who cannot control themselves, as an illness, or as some kind of exaggerated sexual need,” People reported.
Back in 2012, the United Nations appointed the Tomb Raider movie star a special envoy for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, and the actress has always remained an advocate for humanitarian causes. During her U.N. keynote speech, she further stated that sexual violence is not about sex, but it is mainly about power and control. She gave the example of countries like Democratic Republic of Congo and Bangladesh, where militiamen often rape women as a war tactic.
Visit with Angelina Jolie at the @unitednations peacekeeping conference today - thank you for being a steadfast voice in support of the world's most vulnerable. #PeaceConf17 ???????? Visite d’Angelina Jolie à la Conférence sur le maintien de la paix des @nations_unies – merci de plaider sans relâche pour les gens les plus vulnérables du monde. #ConfPaix17
“It is cheaper than a bullet, and it has lasting consequences that unfold with sickening predictability that make it so cruelly effective,” she continued. “This is rape and assault designed to torture, to terrorize, to force people to flee, and to humiliate them.”
She concluded her speech by saying that fighting against sexual violence and harassment cases is definitely hard, but it is not impossible, as all they need to resolve the issue is “political will.”
[Featured Image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]