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Directors Guild of America says members must lead by example to combat sexual harassment

Directors Guild of America says members must lead by example to combat sexual harassment
Oscar-winning producer Harvey Weinstein has been accused by numerous women of sexual misconduct dating back three decades. (John Carucci / Associated Press)

The Directors Guild of America has set forth new procedures regarding sexual harassment complaints in the workplace, telling its members that they must lead by example when it comes to dealing with misconduct.

In a message to members posted on the guild's website Thursday, the DGA laid out guidelines for individuals who have experienced sexual harassment as well as for those who face allegations. The guild said it can represent members who have been accused of improper behavior.

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"If an allegation of sexual harassment has been made against you, and your employer wishes to interview you, the Guild can also represent you," the DGA said in the message. "Whether you need or have the right to representation depends on the facts of the case."

The DGA said it has joined the Commission on Sexual Harassment and Advancing Equality in the Workplace, a Hollywood coalition that is looking into harassment and abuse in the entertainment industry. In December, the commission named Anita Hill as its chair.

Members who have experienced harassment can contact the guild confidentially by phone or email. They can also speak with a field representative.

"As a guild, it is our duty to ensure all members receive fair treatment and due process," the DGA said.

The guild also said its members must set an example in the workplace in the effort to fight against misconduct.

"As directors and members of the directorial team, DGA members are often respected employees on set — and it is incumbent upon all of them to lead by example," the guild said. "All members should speak up and put a stop to unlawful harassment whenever they see or experience it."

The DGA represents more than 16,000 members who work in the film and TV industries. Earlier this week, the Writers Guild of America, West, published its own set of principles regarding workplace harassment.

The major Hollywood guilds have come under pressure in recent months as a wave of sexual harassment scandals has engulfed the industry, taking down such prominent figures as producer Harvey Weinstein, actor Kevin Spacey and filmmaker Brett Ratner.

Weinstein resigned from the DGA in November after numerous accusations from women who have said he harassed and assaulted them in incidents dating back three decades. The Oscar-winning producer has denied all accusations of nonconsensual sex. The guild had filed disciplinary charges against him in October.

Twitter: @DavidNgLAT

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