Boston T Anti-Harassment Campaign Update

boston-anti-grope-campaign-sign-2It’s been a year since the MBTA launched a public awareness campaign about sexual harassment on the Boston transit (the T). Transit Police Chief Paul MacMillan recently said, “This campaign has been highly effective in addressing this persistent issue. Not only have more victims reported this crime, but because of their reports, we have been able to arrest more and more of the offenders.”

The Boston Globe reports that since the campaign launched, the number of groping complaints increased 74 percent. Over the same period, police arrested 24 people for indecent assault and battery, which was an increase of 85 percent from the year before.

I had been wondering what the results of their campaign would be and I’m glad to hear it seems to be positive as far as raising awareness among riders that groping is illegal and encouraging people to report it when it happens.

When I read the article, there were 25 comments from readers. Most of the opening comments were from men concerned that women were overreacting to being on crowded trains and were probably reporting innocent men. Fortunately, many other commenters then jumped in either sharing their experience being obviously groped on the T or defending women who know the difference between groping and just being sardined on a crowded train. Good for them. Educate the ignorant!

Do you take the T? Do you think the anti-harassment campaign has had an impact during the past year?

2 Responses to Boston T Anti-Harassment Campaign Update

  1. Arg, the comment I submitted to the original Boston Globe article last night has never been published. Instead there is another comment from a *sarcasm* brilliant man who decried it a “waste of taxpayers’ money” to monitor for groping on the subway.

  2. […] America, and increasingly in the UK, there are growing numbers of campaigns against Street Harassment and sexual violence against women. The focus of these campaigns is to admonish men for catcalling […]

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