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Peabody Winners Talk Empowered Women and Social Justice Challenges on Red Carpet

The theme on the red carpet at the 78th annual Peabody Awards? Empowering women.

On Saturday, Peabody winners gathered at Cipriani Wall Street, and one of the hot topics on everyone’s mind was the wave of female empowerment spreading across the industry. From Peabody’s Career Achievement Award recipient Rita Moreno to shows like ‘Killing Eve’ to documentaries about rape culture and mothers raising children with mental health struggles, this year’s ceremony showcased the stories and work of women.

“There are a lot of strong women pictured here from ‘Killing Eve’ as an entertainment program to Dolores Huerta and Rita Moreno. A lot of the things that we’re honoring have these kind of strong women characters and that’s a perfect time to say that,” said Jeffrey P. Jones, executive director of the Peabody Awards.

Peabody Awards host Ronan Farrow noted the contrast between the work highlighted and the prosecution of Harvey Weinstein, the former film mogul who was brought down by reports in the New Yorker by Farrow and exposes in the New York Times of sexual assault allegations going back decades. Farrow warned that the Weinstein prosecution will be a long slog.

“It’s gonna be a long process in the criminal justice system. We’re going to be watching this play through over the coming years, not months,” Farrow said. “I think most of the survivors I talked to who were a part of that story are just grateful that it is in the criminal justice system at all.”

Likewise, Peabody winner and writer of the Netflix show “The End of the F***king World” Charlie Covell highlighted a thematic element in the show citing one episode where one of the lead female characters kicks a man out of her room and demands for his respect in her decision.

“She tells him that he has to respect her changing her mind and that really seems to resonate with people,” Covell said.

Hasan Minhaj, host of Netflix’s “Patriot Act,” pointed the threat women face in regards to the recent abortion legislation passed in Alabama. He promised to talk about the issue as well as criminal justice reform and gun control in upcoming episodes of “Patriot Act.”

“I mean, everything that’s going on in Alabama, and a lot of questions asked in the country in regards to criminal justice reform, gun control, these are all things that we’re going to talk about in the show,” Minhaj said.

The Peabody awards also recognized groundbreaking efforts in representation in media for the trans community, as evidenced by the Peabody kudo for FX’s drama series “Pose.” Series writer Janet Mock said that the show has reached an audience of mothers, which was unexpected.

“I think that another audience that has come up and being so vocal are mothers. There’s this matriarchal power in this show and we didn’t set it out to be that way,” Mock said. “I think that a lot of mothers know what it feels like to care for a child and to want something from them and to leave something for them after they’re gone.”

(Cast members and producers of “Pose”)

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