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HollaBack from Harassment

“If you have the gall to holler at a stranger on the street, be prepared for her to Hollaback.”

Imagine that you’re walking home from a long day. The workload from the office took a toll on your body and it’s time to head home to that cozy bed. As a woman you’re usually alert on the street, but today that sense of urgency and defense is not up to par. In no time, your neighborhood is not that far away and as you cross the street to head into the one bedroom apartment, there’s a guy standing outside the building. He’s been there for the past couple of days and constantly tries to make a pass at you with sexual implications and gestures, but as a strong woman you pay it no mind and keep it moving.

But today is different, because today he crosses the line. As you make the attempt to push the door inside, he gropes your chest area. You quickly defend yourself but he gets away and the police have already missed their chance to catch the perve. So what’s next?

It’s a new trend that growing among women, and no it has nothing to do with fashion. Defense against street harassment has become prominent for females, especially for those living in big cities where it seems as though male perverts are outrageously offensive. It was just this month that Pix11 featured a story about a man who forcibly touched a woman on the train. But she was smart. She took a photo of the perve, and now women can be on the look out.

And that’s exactly the motive behind the movement HollaBack. It is the use of mobile technology (i.e. your handy dandy cell phone) to put an end to street harassment and rape towards women.

HollaBack offers a iPhone application (iHollaBack aka the rape whistle) that not only helps to stop the immediate harassment but also “crowdsources” the HollaShame on the Internet, which is a collection of men who disgracefully forced themselves, or made attempts to force themselves, onto women. According to the site, HollaBack evolved into a major networking platform after Emily May who began a Brooklyn blog that featured stories and pictures of the scandalous perverts caught on camera.

I think this movement sends out a message that women will always have the opportunity (and resources) to be able to defend themselves. The movement is growing community-wide and launching a HollaBack in your area is free and easy-but you have to keep it going! Ladies, check out the site and discover the way in which you can HollaBack from the harassment. You never know when you might need to.

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