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Investigating Street Harassment: Internationally!
Hollaback! Melbourne is the local chapter of a global movement working to end street harassment. Hollaback is powered by a network of local activists around the world.
Hollaback has teamed up with Cornell University’s ILR School professor Beth Livingston to study the experiences and impacts of street harassment internationally, through cooperation with Hollaback’s many local
What are we doing? We are launching online surveys in countries on six continents, translated into multiple languages. Links to these surveys will be tweeted, blogged, facebook’ed and emailed worldwide with the hope of gathering data on street harassment that can be used to better understand its impacts in an international context. Links specific to Melbourne (and Australia) can be found below.
What can you do to help? Complete a survey! Complete it and send the link on to others who may or may not be familiar with the movement. The more respondents the better!
What can you expect? The survey asks about demographics, experiences with harassment, reactions to it, and other questions. It is completely anonymous.
Summary reports and press releases can be expected early in 2015.
What if I’m not from Melbourne?
If you’re not from Melbourne you can still complete the survey, as it’s important for us to get data from as many people as possible and just include where you’re from when you’re asked.
What if I have questions? If you have any questions, please email [email protected]
During the school holidays my 15 year old daughter and I went for a walk to our local shopping centre.
We live in a small seaside town in South Australia.
A group of young men on motorbikes parked at the Subway Restaurant wolf-whistled and yelled at us. I said to daughter “don’t look or say anything, just walk to the car”. They were on the other side of the road, but I wonder if they would have done this if we’d been closer.
We both agreed how unnerving and horrible the incident had been.
I was standing next to my car chatting to a female friend 11:30pm Sat night on Sydney Rd.
A large group of young guys were walking past, one ran up to me in front of his mates.
He loudly and slowly sniffed up my upper arm and with his face really close, said, “Niiice” while nodding and looking at my eyes a very gross way (to make sure I’d got the message!?). They all just kept walking along.
I quietly yelled “fuck off” but I wish I’d asked all the guys with him if they were all friends with this one and “wow, really impressive.”
I know it’s not the others that did it – but I felt like he did it to impress them and degrade me – so they are a bit complicit in it doing nothing!
It is also frustrating to feel like it might not have happened if I’d been standing there on the street with a male.
I am a young woman who chooses not to shave her legs.
I was sitting outside the library reading when an old man approached me and repeatedly made comments on my leg hair and how he thought it was “weird but I like it.”
At first I just stared at him and frowned, hoping he would become embarrassed, but, when I didn’t verbally respond, he kept asking “Do you understand?” I finally replied coolly that I perfectly understood but “I don’t like when strangers commented on my body.”
He kept repeating himself anyway and only relented when I went back to pretending to read, silently fuming that he wouldn’t go away.
Oddly enough, in just the past week, this was the third time some random old man decided to begin a conversation with me by pointing out to me that I don’t shave (because I wouldn’t know if they didn’t tell me, of course).
For christ’s sake, I’m not some spectacle to ogle just because I have leg hair!
I was walking home from the supermarket with a carry bag and on the opposite side of the road from the tram stop.
Two males in their thirties were standing with a male child who was between 8 and 12.
The child started yelling out something seemingly derogatory at me, while the two adult males started laughing.
They were obviously commenting on my appearance or dress. This continued for a minute or so, and I then crossed the road to confront them, with the intent of taking a picture on my iPhone to use when reporting verbal abuse to the police.
I asked the men what they were yelling at me, and they refused to answer. They said that their child was having a joke with them and that it was none of my business and if I took a picture they would report me to the police.
I live around the corner and let my partner know about the incident. By the time he had gone to the tram stop to speak to the men about their unacceptable behaviour they had already caught a tram and left.
I was walking home from work at night and a guy slowed down his car, so his friend could hang out the window and shout song lyrics at me and whistle.
The man opposite me on the train leered at me from the second he sat down.
He didn’t try to hide it and kept looking me over. I made eye contact and he stared me out like it was a challenge.
Then I ignored him. He looked at me for another 5 minutes or so (barely even blinking, looking smug) so I got up and moved further up the carriage. He moved too.
When the train reached my stop, he got up after me and followed me out. I got back on the train and had to walk 40 minutes home instead of 10.
Well i am trans-women and i like to go out into the town and have some peace and quiet.
I don’t go out to hurt people and i don’t go out to harass people.
One day I decided to go to Greensborough Shopping Centre from Doncaster Shopping Centre.
I had on a dress but no wig and told myself “why should I wear something when it dosen’t feel like me?”
I was to find out why… it was Halloween probably the worst time in Melbourne to be transsexual. I had spent an time at the Greensborough Plaza and I decided to go home with my friend, I saw her off at the bus stop and decided to go to KFC as my friend needed to use to toilet.
My friend walks into the building and out of the middle of nowhere a van filled with young guys (it look like a white trades van) started wolf whistling and when I paid no attention all I heard was “dog, dog you f***ing dog”.
I felt for safety reason I had to go inside the KFC and when I looked outside at the van one of the guys where hanging out of the side van door with it wide open cars watching this and did nothing.
But that was not the end of the day, me and my friend walked back to the bus stop when this black 4wd pulled up and on of the guys decided to keep trying to figure out what sex I was and when he figured it out he stuck he head out the window and stated laughing with the most stupid laugh I have ever heard I decided it was a good idea to give him his own medicine and he did not like it he ended up popping his head back in the car. He said “When I heard there was some queer down here dressed in drag well I was just trying to have some fun.”
So after being stared at, pointed and laughed at all day long from car windows and people on the streets people taking photos of me, I feel it is uncalled for and unnecessary. I feel as though I can no longer go shopping in my area. I feel that I can only go to St Kilda or Sydney.
I was walking home from school and walked past a house with men in their 20’s and got called sluts.