Safe Space: WILA + WIF Women’s Initiative
Women in Film has partnered with WILA to launch an entertainment industry-specific support group for survivors of sexual harassment. Together, we’re ensuring women at all levels of the industry are supported.
Since October 2017, growing attention has been focused on the stories of countless allegations of sexual harassment perpetrated in the entertainment industry. In response, Women In Film launched a Sexual Harassment Help Line — an integrated program to refer survivors of harassment to attorneys, designated mental health counselors, and law enforcement professionals.
The WIF Help Line partnered with Wright Institute Los Angeles to offer an important resource to survivors, particularly those who cannot afford expensive private treatment or who have inadequate insurance coverage. “Safe Space” is a free and confidential support group for women in the entertainment industry who have experienced sexual harassment, facilitated by therapists who specialize in empowering survivors of trauma and abuse.
Sign Up. We’ll Call You.
Will you fund this initiative to help women heal?
Marcia Nimmer, LCSW, Psy.D.
Marcia is a clinical psychologist and licensed clinical social worker. She received her doctorate from Pacifica Graduate Institute, where she specialized in depth psychology. Marcia is the author of Finding Meaning in Later Life, an exploration into how the second half of life holds hidden gifts and treasures. She is known for her warmth and intuitive style. As a clinician, she enables individuals of all ages to make emotional contact with their authentic inner experience, allowing for growth and transformation.
Ilana Bar-Din Giannini, LCSW
Safe Space Founder & Group Therapies Program Director
“After 20 years working as a professional writer, my decision to train as a psychotherapist came from a strong sense of personal optimism: I believe that people can write -- and change -- their own stories. With the right help and support, even traumatic stories can be reworked and lives reimagined. Social work underscored my sense that we heal best if gently moved from a place of isolation to a place of supportive understanding."
Katherine Smith, LMFT, Psy.D.
Katherine is an LMFT with a doctorate from Pacifica Graduate Institute. She believes therapy is more than just overcoming life’s challenges – it is an opportunity for you to explore and create a new relationship to your self. Katherine approaches therapy with kindness, compassion, and humor. She has worked with individuals and couples of diverse backgrounds, sexual orientations, mental health concerns, and integrates social justice and feminist perspectives in her approach to therapy.
Michele Gomes, Psy.D.
Safe Space Co-Founder & WILA Executive Director
Frequently Asked Qs
Who can join Safe Space?
What happens in group?
- Confidentiality, group respect
- Safety: how to reinstate & maintain a sense of safety
- Sharing your story while maintaining privacy and boundaries
- From a psychological standpoint: What is harassment? What is assault? What is trauma?
- Recognizing symptoms and their connections to the event(s)
- Resourcing & referrals for ongoing support
Is this group confidential?
- To protect you or the public from serious harm — if, for example, you discuss intent and plans to attempt suicide or harm another person.
- We are required to report ongoing abuse or neglect of children, the elderly or dependent adults (people with disabilities). However, if an adult discloses that he or she was abused as a child, we typically aren’t bound to report that abuse, unless there are other children continuing to be abused.
- We may release information if we receive a court order. That might happen if a person’s mental health came into question during legal proceedings.
Do I have to already be in individual therapy to join the group?
What's the process to join the group?
Contact WILA at 424-371-5191 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our therapists will contact you to do a brief (10 minute) screening call. Each person is carefully screened for appropriate fit by the group facilitators and group supervisors. If it is determined that you may not be a good fit for the group, you will be offered appropriate referrals.
Will I have to share details about what happened to me?
Will I be required to name my perpetrator(s)?
Is the group really free?
Who will be facilitating the Safe Space groups?
Safe Space groups are facilitated by pre-licensed therapists enrolled in WILA’s Psychology Internship and Postgraduate Fellowship. The facilitators are supervised by licensed mental health professionals on WILA’s Teaching and Supervising Faculty with input from WILA’s Executive Director, Michele Gomes, Psy.D.
Where do the Safe Space groups take place?
Due to COVID-19, Safe Space groups are conducted virtually online. Otherwise, Safe Space groups take place at our West Los Angeles location which provides a safe, comfortable, accessible, and confidential atmosphere. We are conveniently located at 11845 West Olympic Boulevard, Suite 505W, Los Angeles, CA 90064. Ample street parking is available nearby.