Unsafe in downtown Cleveland

November 30, 2010

The other night, I went out for drinks with a couple of friends in downtown Cleveland. As we were walking back to our car, a man starts shouting out a car window that he likes one of our asses. He goes on and on and then finally yells as the they turn the corner, “I will not eat your pussy if you do not suck my cock.” I was worried they were going to drive the same way we were walking, but thankfully they turned the other way. I was worried they were going to stop.

– Anonymous

Location: Cleveland, OH

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Include your location and it will be added to the Street Harassment Map.


“Most of the time the men don’t say anything, they just try to touch me”

November 29, 2010

I hate it!!! I thought it was only my problem because I always get told “take it as a compliment, he thinks you are pretty.”

I was harassed so many times. Mostly in tram or bus.

I am a very shy person, I never go to clubs or bars or suspect dark streets. I am not beautiful, I don’t wear sexy clothes, I only wear skirts in hot summer ( they cover my knees) and then I always get honked or yelled at out of cars.

But most of the time the men don’t say anything, they just try to touch me.

One day in tram I was sitting on a doubleseat and all the other doubleseats and most of the singleseats were free (there were only 3 people in the tram) a man came in and sat next to me on the other seat of my doubleseat. He came so close, he almost lay on my lap and leaned on me. I was stuck between him and the window. He read a big newspaper and every time he turned a page he tried to touch my breast. I was intimidated and wanted to cry and couldn’t move. On my station I asked him to let me out but he didn’t. So I had to climb over his lap/legs.

One day I was shopping and a guy followed me 45 minutes saying, “I love you… I love you… I love you…” I tried to ignore him and run through the stores but he didn’t disappear. It was getting dark and I was afraid to go home because I thought he’d follow me.

One day I was waiting in line. Behind me some boys (14 years old I think). They were laughing dirty at me and then they touched my ass. Everyone, one after the other. I told them to stop about 5 times. They kept on touching and laughing. I felt so helpless. They stopped when I kicked one of them in the balls.

One day while I was waiting for the bus a man tried to touch my breast getting his hand under my shirt!!!

One day I was in tram (of course) with my girls. The guy had his hand in his pocket and… Staring at us all the time. An older lady shouted at him but he didnt react he kept on staring at us and masturbating.

One day in tram (where else) a guy came and sat vis-a-vis. He tried to look into my eyes and I tried to look away. He wanted to force me to look into his eyes!!! Then he started to rub his legs on my legs. I was shocked and didn’t know what to do. I moved my legs from left to right from right to left to get away from his legs but his legs always followed.
When I told this story a (male) friend, he just said: “The guy probably thought, a pretty girl alone, looking sad (I am always looking a little pissed), maybe she doesn’t have a boyfriend.” So do I have to put a fake smile on my face to show pervert guys “I am happy and sexual supplied“?

And another guy said, “Some woman are looking so appealing that some man can’t hold back” I should understand it and maybe I was dressed to “slutty“ (even if I was, nobody has to touch me!!!). In this situation I was wearing jeans, sneakers and parka, it was cold outside!!!

One day (waiting for the tram – of course) a guy tried to touch me and I moved away from him. Then he stared at my legs, into my eyes, at my legs, into my eyes… licking his lips the whole time. What was he trying to say? He is a cannibal and wants to eat my legs???

Several other times when I was walking down the street and men tried to talk me into their cars.

Several other times men came to me saying “(wanna) fuck?” And when I got angry saying “it was just a question, you can answer with no, take it as a compliment.”

For about 15 years I have to deal with it. I hoped it stopped when I get older but it doesn’t.

When my 55 year old co-worker was waiting for the tram (of course) and no other people were around, a guy (20 years) stared at her. Then he said, “You are good looking. Do you want to sleep with me?” When she arrived at work she was still shocked and shaking.

I hate it soooo much. I dont know how to stop it!!!

Oh wait, I should take it as a compliment…

– Anonymous

Location: Germany

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Include your location and it will be added to the Street Harassment Map.


Weekly Blog Round Up: November 28, 2010

November 28, 2010

Story Submissions Recap:

I accept street harassment submissions from anywhere in the world. Share your story!

In the News, On the Blogs:

Announcements:

Upcoming Events:

Ten Tweets from the Week:


Police officer harasser in New Orleans

November 28, 2010

I thought I had seen just about every form of harassment until Monday night/ early Tuesday morning. I had posted an incident on this site this past summer. The cop that I had given the benefit of the doubt to, thinking maybe he just didn’t witness me being attacked, ended up being the worst harasser I have ever come across.

I came across him for the 3rd time two nights ago. I was on Bourbon street debating on whether or not I should go to work. I stopped at my one strip club which was empty. I spent time talking to the DJ and Doorman. Then I headed towards another club to see if anyone was there. Again it was dead. As I was turning around a group of people (both men and women) called me over. We got into a conversation. They were tourist so I gave them my usual advice – go to Frenchmen Street or any where but Bourbon. I was mid sentence talking to another girl when the Cop in a golf cart pulls up. He calls me over and tells me I have to get off of Bourbon Street.

WTF? I actually did a double take.

This time I knew I didn’t do anything wrong. Once before he had kicked me off the PUBLIC street because I didn’t have an ID (I again excused his behavior, “maybe he didn’t think I was 21” I reasoned). When I informed him that it was my right to be on the street especially, since I live and work there. He suggested I was a hooker. I was furious but kept my cool. I had to buy stripper shoes and I told him as much. He followed me to the shoe store in his little golf cart. His hostility actually scared me. I just knew that my challenging his authority was going to end badly.

I stopped back at my one club and told the doorman about the Cop. I was really mad but, also freaked out. I didn’t want him to follow me all the way down Bourbon where it gets more deserted and where I live. I asked if I could wait in the club until the Cop turned around and passed by again so I could walk home without the hassle. I had no such luck!

I was waiting at the bar in my club and the next thing I know the Cop is pushing past the door guy, bouncers and manager, demanding that I step outside. I went without a fuss and asked what I was in trouble for. The answer: prostitution. Mostly though he was pissed I didn’t get off of Bourbon St. I’m sorry I didn’t want to walk 10 blocks on a deserted street. On a weekend when streets are packed I avoid Bourbon like the plague – not on a Monday when things are dead. I try to stay safe.

Even worse, talking to other women I discovered this is the Cop’s MO – He kicks young women, some strippers some not, off of Bourbon Street on the pretense that we are all prostitutes. If you are not with a male he has no problem banishing you to a darkened side street. I felt like I walked into another dimension when I got arrested. I still prefer the day I spent in jail to risking my safety. I want to face him in court and prove that I’m innocent and he is a sexist bully unfit for NOPD.

– Megan Kelley

Location: New Orleans, LA

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Include your location and it will be added to the Street Harassment Map.


Saddening: when women tell other women to just “deal” with street harassment

November 25, 2010

So here we go. Another week of idiots thinking they can hiss and catcall to me. For no reason at all. Ok so it hasn’t been all that bad this time but it still left me feeling annoyed.

Harasser 1) I’m sitting on a bus with my boyfriend, then we decide to move seats because there wasn’t much leg space. After we move, we hear two young men sitting two seats behind us cough and the word ‘twats’ being said at the same time. I knew it was at us. And I’m sure it wasn’t an accident that they somehow came out with that word when they coughed! And both of them as well. Hmmm.

Harasser 2) Still on the bus, almost at our destination. I look out the window and see a van. And surprise surprise, I saw a nice view of a middle finger sticking up at the back window. Charming. What could I of done? Smiled and waved? Of course not. I happily gave them the finger back! Before the idiots drove on.

Harasser 3) This happened the day after. I was walking home from my boyfriends house and I wasn’t in a very good mood. Well certainly not in the mood to be whistled at! Yep, but thats what happens when you are in a ‘don’t mess with me’ mood and you have the ‘don’t mess with me’ look on your face. It’s called intimidation!

Dam so I’ve really taken some crap this week. As I said, it’s not really shocking or anything but still frustrating! I’ve had enough. I can’t go anywhere…

[Editor’s note: Here is a second submission from Clarice]

I do apologise, I know I’ve already sent one story yesterday but I just have to add this bit in… First of all, I had another harasser. This was after I sent the story. So… Harasser 4) I’m waiting for a bus to go home from the supermarket and just as the bus was coming, two boys on bikes rode past and shouted BITCH! at me. I could not say anything back to them. I was livid. It ruined my evening and I felt powerless. What did I do to deserve this crap? And to top it off, when I told my gran she just laughed and said ‘perhaps it wasn’t aimed at me’. It was.

Then to get my frustration out, I ranted about street harassment on an anger site. Most of the responses I had were awful. One said ‘you love it you slut’ another ‘show us your tits bitch’ and the one that saddened me the most was from a woman telling me it’s what men do and I should deal with it.

Yeah sure. Fine. Im a woman and because I have a vagina then I should deal with it. Ok from now on I will, after all boys will be boys (sarcasm)

– Clarice

Location: Wales, UK

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Include your location and it will be added to the Street Harassment Map.


16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence 2010

November 25, 2010

Today marks the start of 16 days of activism against gender violence.

Aside from writing this quick blog post, I didn’t do anything to mark the day. I’m in India this week and I spent the day visiting the Taj Mahal. It took 10 hours to go the round-trip distance of 250 miles. I saw no gender violence on the streets, but I noticed a stark lack of women. Men were huddled along the road in groups, driving and riding in every possible mode of transportation imaginable, sitting in coffee shops, and crossing the street in large groups. I saw some women walking and riding in vehicles too, but the ratio was perhaps 1:10 or even 1:15, women to men. So while I saw no direct gender violence, the lack of women is partially because of gender violence and gender inequality in the homes and on the streets. Around the world, women’s mobility restriction in public spaces is often caused by a fear of gender violence.

I wrote a bit about this for the Ms blog earlier this week. I also want to direct you to my travel companion’s Ms blog post about the conference we attended earlier this week in Delhi. She highlighted two of the outstanding women we heard from who are working every day to end gender violence and discrimination against women in the slums and against women with disabilities. They are inspirational.

I also want to direct to you to two of the most recent stories about the amazing woman who fought against the gender violence she experienced on the New York City subway system.

I encourage you to consider doing something in the next 16 days to speak out, act out, or write out against gender violence.


International conference on women’s safety and NYC flasher caught

November 24, 2010

Today was the final day of the 3rd International Conference on Women’s Safety: Building Inclusive Cities, in Delhi, India. I presented yesterday about sexual harassment on public transportation and also learned SO much from more than 200 women and men from 40 countries across the three day conference. I know I will be thinking, researching, and writing about what I’ve learned for some time. I wrote a blog post for Ms. Magazine after the first day of the conference, so check that out and shortly my journalist friend Brittany‘s post about the conference will be up on the Ms. Blog so check that out too.

Via CBS News

And if you haven’t already heard about the amazing woman in New York City who took down a flasher on the subway, here are a few links so you can: