Testimony: “It is unfair that we women and even young girls, because yes, girls younger than I experience sexual harassment, have to deal with this issue daily.”

My name is Meiling and I am a senior in high school. While I have only been on this earth for 17 years, I have been the victim of sexual harassment a countless number of times, in fact, too many times. Every day I either have to deal with a grown man staring creepily at me and my body, or an inappropriate comment slipped at me while walking down the street. I cannot explain how uncomfortable this makes me feel and how frightened I am when this happens to me on a
daily basis.

My most memorable and frightening encounter with sexual harassment occurred about a year and half ago when I was walking home from school and a large man in a heavy coat walked by me and rubbed his hand along my arm. It happened so fast I didn’ t really make sense of what had just happened and thought it might have been by accident.

However, in the following days I saw the same guy about three more times and every time he walked past me he would touch my arm. I did not know what to do at the time. I felt helpless. This man was invading my personal space and made me feel very uncomfortable. Moreover, I was extremely afraid for my personal safety. Thank goodness I have never seen this man again, but this memory will forever stick with me.

It is unfair that we women and even young girls, because yes, girls younger than I experience sexual harassment, have to deal with this issue daily. Our personal safety is put into danger every time this happens because in addition to being sexually harassed we face the possibility of being verbally attacked or even physically attacked for rejecting a man who tries to talk to us in the street. This is why I am asking for a change to happen in our city of New York where I should feel safe walking by myself in the street. More enforced actions need to take place in order to stop sexual harassment and prevent it from happening.

I thank you kindly for taking the time to read my testimony and hope it better informed you on this issue.

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