One Billion Rising and Jane Fonda in WeHo

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February 15, 2014

Legendary actress Jane Fonda and Hollywood heartthrob Dylan McDermott helped kick-off the City of West Hollywood’s One Billion Rising for Justice event on Friday, February 14, 2014 at the Sal Guarriello Veterans’ Memorial, at the intersection of Holloway Drive and Santa Monica Boulevard.

One Billion Rising for Justice is a global day of action in recognition of the 16th anniversary of V-Day, with events planned around the world to spotlight and embrace justice for survivors of gender violence.

The City of West Hollywood’s event was the kick-off of One Billion Rising events in Southern California.

“This is such a powerful, global campaign — I hope that you will join me for this kickoff event as we rise and dance for justice for the 1 BILLION women who are victims of violence and rape,” said Mayor Abbe Land.

Jane Fonda speaking at One Billion Rising kick off event in West Hollywood. Photo by Skylar Aud

Noting that West Hollywood has been out front in the fight for women’s health and safety, she added, “Rise with us to show the world that West Hollywood respects the rights and dignity of every woman and girl to stand for justice.”

Last year, the City of West Hollywood joined over one billion people in more than 200 countries with its February 2013 One Billion Rising event. Jane Fonda, Anne Hathaway, and Marisa Tomei stirred the crowd and hundreds of people joined together to rise and dance to demand an end to violence against women and girls.

“One in three women will be beaten or raped in her lifetime. That equates to one billion women,” said Mayor Pro Tem John D’Amico. “The City of West Hollywood is proud to stand alongside all women from around the world as one voice against violence.”

This year, the City of West Hollywood’s One Billion Rising for Justice event intensifies its efforts and asks: “What does justice look like?” The event is call to action to rise, release, dance, and demand justice!

“Emma Goldman once said: ‘Don’t invite me to the revolution unless we can dance!,’” said Councilmember John J. Duran. “As part of a global community, we dance in unison to oppose gender violence.”

The event included comments from City of West Hollywood Mayor Abbe Land, members of the West Hollywood City Council, and representatives from V-Day/One Billion Rising.

Flash Mob America led the crowd in a performance of the official campaign dance “Break the Chain” choreographed by the renowned dancer/choreographer Debbie Allen.

In addition, there was a special performance of an original song composed for One Billion Rising for Justice by recording artist Lili Hadyn.

Participating organizations include the West Hollywood Domestic Violence Task Force; Peace Over Violence; the National Council of Jewish Women/Los Angeles; and the Hollywood Chapter of the National Organization for Women.

The activists came out in force for this year’s event. Photo by Skylar Aud

About One Billion Rising – One Billion Rising for Justice is a global call to survivors of gender violence and people who love them to gather and to break the silence and release their stories – politically, spiritually, outrageously – through art, dance, marches, ritual, song, spoken word, testimonies, and more. More information is available at www.onebillionrising.org

About V-Day – V-Day is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls. V-Day is a catalyst that promotes creative events to increase awareness, raise money, and revitalize the spirit of existing anti-violence organizations. V-Day generates broader attention for the fight to stop violence against women and girls, including rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation, and sex slavery. More information is available at www.vday.org

See the video of the dance here.