New workplace harassment helpline launched by Emma Watson

Rights of Women have launched a new helpline for women who have experienced sexual harassment at work. Legal advice will be provided on a number of issues, including identifying sexual harassment, how to bring a claim against your employer, Employment Tribunal procedures, and non-disclosure agreements (“NDAs”).

The helpline was inspired by the #MeToo movement, and is funded by TIME’S UP UK’s Justice and Equality Fund. Emma Watson, who launched the helpline, said it was “completely staggering” that the free helpline for women in England and Wales was the only service of its type. “Understanding what your rights are, how you can assert them and the choices you have if you’ve experienced harassment is such a vital part of creating safe workplaces for everyone, and this advice line is such a huge development in ensuring that all women are supported, wherever we work.“ [1]

Suzanne McKie QC, Founder of Farore Law and member of Rights of Women’s Advisory Panel, will be taking calls on the helpline next week.

The helpline number is 020 7490 0152, and will be open on Mondays (6pm - 8pm) and Tuesdays (5pm - 7pm), excluding bank holidays. More opening times are expected in due course.

[1] The Guardian

Suzanne McKie QC quoted in The Times

Suzanne McKie QC was quoted in The Times regarding #MeToo, non-disclosure agreements (NDAs), and how lawyers address complaints of sexual harassment. Amongst other actions, the Solicitors' Regulation Authority (SRA) has opened a file into the behaviour of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (a top-tier law firm) towards one of Farore Law's clients.

Suzanne confirmed that it is not common for the SRA to be involved in such claims: "I would expect this to increase as people become more aware of what the SRA can do, and what amounts to professional misconduct. The SRA is also looking at strengthening the duties of solicitors to ensure that those duties are overridingly in favour of justice, so that those duties trump your duty to your client."

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