We’ve been following the groundswell for the first International Anti-Street Harassment Day since it was announced. While we organise and raise awareness here in London, all across the world people are making their voices heard in relation to this issue, redressing the balance of power that incidences of harassment so consistently and cruelly skew.
One of the reasons I think that discussions around street harassment attracts so many opinions is the direct, often daily experience so many women and LGBTQ people have of it, regardless of whether they identify as feminist, regardless of if they consider themselves politically engaged. People can barely wait for you to finish explaining what HollabackLDN is before they want to share their story and frustrations with you, which is further proof and affirmation of why we do this! That universal sense of outrage, shame and embarrasment, together with the process of unpacking the issues at play when ‘Nice Tits!’ breaks the silence or the hand brushes your bum, can be the ultimate gateway drug into beginning to read the world through a feminist lens.
What IASHD has done is put a crucial spotlight on this issue and of the work being done to interrogate the prevalence of gender-based violence in our lives, because it’s far from only Hollaback who are on the case. Check out:
“When we speak of the daily realities many women and LGBTQ folks face when they walk down the street, let’s not forget to mention the children and youth who learn how to repeat these behaviors from the widespread sexual violence in our communities, the media, their homes, streets and schools.”
These are just a few, tell us what you did to mark the day in the comments, and if you didn’t do anything, why not join us tomorrow at 7pm, Wah Nails Dalston, for an all-genders-welcome social night, where we’ll be workshopping ideas to combat street harassment and discussing gender-based gubbins and ways to get involved in a judgement-free forum, with drinks and baked goods and a top secret awesome film screening afterwards too!