Jane Fonda's Climate Change Protests: A Timeline of Her 'Fire Drill Fridays' and Multiple Arrests

jane fonda arrested at climate change protest
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If it's Friday in the fall or winter of 2019, you're probably reading a headline about Jane Fonda being arrested at a climate change protest in Washington, D.C. And that's exactly what the Grace and Frankie star wants.

"There is a collective crisis, requires collective action," the 81-year-old star told CNN's Christiane Amanpour last month. "And so I decided to use my celebrity to try to raise the sense of urgency, and I moved to Washington, and I'm going to get arrested every Friday."

The protests, which Fonda refers to as "Fire Drill Friday," are to show support for a Green New Deal and bring awareness to the ways in which climate change affects other parts of human life, such as women's rights, access to drinking water and global militarism.

As if it wasn't enough that the actress -- who first became a controversial political figure for her activism during the Vietnam War, which earned her the nickname "Hanoi Jane" -- continues to get arrested in the name of raising awareness, she's also making bigger headlines by bringing along her famous friends to join in the demonstrations. 

"I've had to send out invitations," Fonda told The Hollywood Reporter of recruiting noteworthy pals to be arrested by her side. "Sometimes they respond and sometimes they don't."

The actress said that members of her Grace and Frankie family -- including the showrunners, Marta Kauffman and Howard Morris, and the entire writers' room -- would be joining her for a future protest, along with other celebrity pals.

"Lily Tomlin will be coming down, but I don't know exactly when," she added. "[Civil rights leaders] Rev. William Barber, Dolores Huerta and others are coming down for my birthday on Dec. 20. Diane Lane is coming down for the freshwater one. Taylor Schilling and Kyra Sedgwick are coming down. I'm still waiting to hear from Don Cheadle and Mark Ruffalo."

See below for an updated timeline of Fonda's arrests -- and the famous friends who have joined her in the important cause.

Nov. 15, 2019

Fonda avoided arrest again on Nov. 15 -- as her group staged a sit-in protest in the Senate rotunda -- but she brought along her on-screen daughters, Grace and Frankie co-stars June Diane Raphael and Brooklyn Decker, as well as members of the show's writing staff for the demonstration.

jane fonda june diane raphael brooklyn decker fire drill friday protest
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Raphael was arrested at the protest, and later shared a photo to Instagram, writing, "I was arrested for the first time today while demanding a Green New Deal, an end to fossil fuel extraction and the centering of justice in all climate conversations. Thank you to @janefonda for bringing me and to @firedrillfriday for an incredible education and for my dear friend @brooklyndecker for joining me."

Earlier in the week, Fonda spoke with ET at the Glamour Women of the Year Awards in New York City on Monday, where she accepted an award on behalf of Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old Swedish student and activist whose protests inspired the actress to action.

"It doesn't matter about the arrest," she said of her Fire Drill Friday protests. "What matters is getting the word out to people and engaging in civil disobedience, because this is what's going to be more and more necessary. Everybody's gotta get used to this new normal, getting beyond our comfort zone and not acting as business as usual anymore. Risking a little bit more, because there's so much at stake. "

Nov. 8, 2019

Fonda was not arrested on Nov. 8 -- likely to avoid the longer jail stay, as she explained to THR the week prior -- however, she was joined at the protest by ice cream icons and longtime environmental activists Ben Cohen and Jerry Epstein.

jane fonda ben cohen jerry epstein climate change protest november 8
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Nov. 1, 2019

The Nov. 1 arrest -- for which Fonda was joined by pals Catherine Keener and Rosanna Arquette -- was the first time the actress had to spend the night in jail. She admitted in the interview with THR that, while she'll continue to protest, she'll have to stop getting arrested before it starts to interfere with her work schedule.

"After the third arrest, they gave me a court date in November. And because I was arrested again before my court date, that's when they said, 'Well, you're going to have to spend the night in jail,'" Fonda explained. "I have to be careful not to get to a point where they're going to keep me for 90 days, because I have to begin preparing for Grace and Frankie in January. So I'm not going to get arrested every time. They give you three warnings and so I will step away at the third warning."

jane fonda catherine keener roseanna arquette climate change protest
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Oct. 25, 2019

Fonda said she recruited Ted Danson specifically for the Oct. 25 protest, which was focused on oceans, for which The Good Place star has long been an advocate. Both stars were arrested at the protest, Fonda in her now-iconic red trench coat.

"The team and I decided at the very beginning that we should all try to wear something red. I racked my brain -- I didn't have anything red. I don't usually wear red. So I decided that the last article of clothing that I will ever buy is a red coat. Sure enough, I found one at Neiman Marcus on sale for $500. And that's the coat," she told THR, explaining that she was following young activist Greta Thunberg in espousing a more minimalist way of life. "I'm speaking out against consumerism and so I have to walk the talk. And so that's the last thing I'll buy."

jane fonda ted danson arrested at climate change protest
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Oct. 18, 2019

The actress was joined by her Grace and Frankie co-star, Sam Waterston, for her second protest arrest. Fonda said her activism in the 1970s taught her "the importance of not being alone in your activism, to be part of a movement because then no matter what is thrown your way, you have the cushion of your co-activists in the movement around you."

jane fonda sam waterston climate change protest

Oct. 11, 2019

The first of the "Fire Drill Friday" protests where the actress was arrested. Fonda and 16 others were charged with unlawfully demonstrating on the East Front of the Capitol building.

jane fonda arrested at climate change protest
Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via Getty Images


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