How safe are the streets of New York City for a young woman? If we are to go by the findings posted by the makers of this video, you might be shocked to find out the results. Thanks to the efforts of a 24-year-old volunteer to the non-profit organization Hollaback!, we now have some idea as to how bad the situation on the streets of downtown New York really is for young women.
The woman who volunteered for the job is Shoshana Roberts, who was assigned the job of walking around the busy streets around Manhattan for nearly ten hours, according to the New York Post. Another volunteer, Rob Bliss had earlier in August offered to volunteer for such an experiment in order to see the grim reality. According to a post on the Hollaback! website, Rob was inspired to do this experiment after his girlfriend constantly told him about the harassment she suffers each time she steps out on the streets of New York. Rob’s job was to walk a few meters ahead of Shoshana and record using a hidden camera in his backpack, the proceedings of the ten hour walkthrough. The results were shocking, to say the least.
During the ten hour walk around New York’s Manhattan, Shoshana was “harassed” over nearly 108 times by several individuals. The kind of harassment included catcalls and comments. Some people even followed her for considerable distances. Shoshana was not wearing anything particularly revealing at the time she took on to streets. A crew neck T-shirt and a jeans by which all standards sounds modest was her attire when she ventured out. However, that didn’t seem to have stopped these men from approaching her and harassing her. Several people made obnoxious comments about her figure, some sounded like a compliment, some wished her and one guy even demanded a “Thank you” from her for his unsolicited comment! One particular guy even followed her for over five minutes demanding she talk to him! Comments about her included words like, “damn, girl!” “nice!”, “you don’t wanna talk?” “sexy!,” “bless you, Mami” and “Hey baby!”
According to Hollaback!, the video was shot over a period of several days back in late September. The aim of the experiment was to raise funds to combat the menace of street harassment and to make people aware of the fact that such a thing really exists!
“I want people to see it and say, ‘Holy crap,” said Emily May, executive director of Hollaback!
“All of these smaller comments add up, when you’re constantly bombarded throughout the day about how you look — it’s the sum of it all. We hope people walk away with an understanding about how it feels,” she added.
Are you a woman who faces harassment like this on the streets of New York? Let us know what you think! This would aleo be an eye-opener for men who thought this happens only in countries like India and Pakistan!
[Image Via YouTube]