Street harassment video illustrates what women face everyday

A video illustrating harassment of a woman walking on the streets of New York has had 14 million views in two days (30 October) and over 60 000 comments.

It was created for the organisation I Holla Back to make men aware of what they do and to give woman support for doing something when it happens. Actress Shoshana B. Roberts volunteered and spent 10 hours walking in various sections of the City with filmaker Rob Bliss filming it via a hidden camera.

Like all forms of gender-based violence, street harassers fall evenly across lines of race and class. It is a longstanding myth that street harassment is a “cultural” thing, perpetrated mostly by men of color. We believe that street harassment is a “cultural” thing in the sense that it emerges from a culture of sexism — and unfortunately — that is everyone’s culture.

www.ihollaback.org

The organisation has chapters in 79 cities in 29 countries, so this is a real global problem and it is just one of many groups that tackle gender violence. It is a pity that some would dismiss this as not being a real issue simply because the worse cases of abuse exist.

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