In the wake of Georgia's "heartbeat" abortion law, Hollywood industry people have been quick to call for studios to pack up shop in Georgia. But finally, a star is talking about how to empower Georgians who want to work with Hollywood yet don't support the state's viewpoints on abortion.
Alyssa Milano is working with Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms to create a mobile app for Georgia-based location scouts and location managers. Variety reports that Milano said the app would "guarantee we can spend money in places that will not fund voter suppression, inequality and the stripping away of anyone's rights."
The app would be similar to the political app MiniVAN, which is used in voter canvassing to help campaigns keep tabs on citizens' political affiliation. MiniVAN can get as specific as city block and residence, and Milano and Bottoms' app will work utilizing the same tactics but will be used to suss out people who are for progress.
"I asked if there was a version we could create with maps to the block of people that support a progressive policy, versus homes that are supporting a hurtful policy," said Milano according to Variety. "Can we use these to pinpoint in red states where it is safe for productions to spend their money? She [Bottoms] thought it was a brilliant idea."
Milano said that she came up with the idea during the filming of Netflix series Insatiable, in which she realized that the production shoot was in an area outside the "blue pocket" of Atlanta. She realized that "every time we shoot on location outside of Atlanta, we are funding a hurtful policy," referring to a home production rented which had a kitchen mat that stated "Brian Kemp for Governor." Milano estimated that the amount spent on the two days of shooting that particular Insatiable episode was $30,000, money that could have been used towards Georgia residents who are pro-choice and are aligned with "70 percent of the country who believe in safe, legal abortions."
Bottoms is reported to be vetting voter data from her own election to map Atlanta and hopes other tech companies get involved. "A woman's health care decisions should remain between her, her doctor and her maker," she said. "Atlanta has a robust tech community that could potentially assist with leveraging the kind of data and information Alyssa is discussing."
One of the issues Georgia's abortion law has created is how to protest without damaging the income and lives of everyday Georgians who depend on Hollywood's relationship with the state to take care of themselves and their families. Milano said that her research addresses "this very tricky balance of not wanting to ever cause families harm in the state of Georgia, but being aware enough to know that the only thing that changes the state of policy is usually money."
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