Story, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: Two against one.

Two men told me I smelled good.

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Story, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: the “compliment”

Just the normal “compliment” not meant as a compliment. Makes me feel like shit.

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Nonverbal Harassment, Story, Verbal

Andrea’s story: So much for security.

I passed by the hired security guards daily because their desk is directly across from the elevators at my university. One guard (who I’ve never spoken to) would make me feel uncomfortable because he would stare at me as I waited for the doors to close. I often tried to look busy so I didn’t have to make eye contact with him. I was leaving campus one day and he FOLLOWED ME through the lobby, out the door and into the parking lot. I didn’t notice until he caught up to me and stopped to ask me, “what’s your name?”… Really? A security guard was following me through the parking lot? After that, I took the stairs to 8th floor so that I didn’t have to see him. The next year I found out he was fired for harassing other female students.

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Story, Verbal

Andrea’s story: Can’t even go to grocery store without harassment.

I’m verbally harassed in public at least twice a month. The latest I can remember was when I was in the grocery store at night, alone, passing by a man who was obviously checking me out while he was on the phone asking his wife or girlfriend which kind of frozen waffles to buy. He passed by me in a different isle as he was walking to the checkout line and said, “girl, I could eat you up like chocolate”. Who says this stuff?!?! Situations like this happen to me so many times I feel like all I can do is pretend I didn’t hear them. Even then I’m called names for not engaging in conversations with them. I shouldn’t need a boyfriend with me to not be harassed at the grocery store.

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groping, Story, youth

Emma’s story: It’s not OK.

I was 15 and I was on the TTC Dufferin bus when a man sat down beside me. It wasn’t very crowded, but he still sat right next to me. The man pulled his backpack over his chest and lap. After a few minutes, I felt his hand brush my side. I mumbled “excuse me”, and shuffled a bit to the side. He shuffled closer and slowly started grabbing my side. I got up quickly and rang the request stop bell, even though I was still several stops away. He muttered a soft, “sorry” and I was too scared to say anything except “It’s okay”.

I wish I’d been brave enough to tell him it’s not okay. It’s not okay to touch a woman against her will. It’s especially not okay to touch a woman against her will when you’re 20 years older and she’s a teenager.

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A Week in Our Shoes

Week in Our Shoes: Chalkers and Walkers

Dear HOLLAbackers —

I am writing you from sunny Long Beach on a layover. It’s sunny, 72, and I’m sitting outdoors. I’m pretty sure this is the best layover of my life.

We are coming up on International Anti-Street Harassment Week. This upcoming week, April 7-April 13, Hollaback! sites all over the world will be chalk walking, rallying, marching, crafting, and hosting all sorts of events. Tell what action you’re taking on twitter (@ihollaback) and we’ll retweet it to promote it!


  • Utah State University and Stanford! I spoke at both this week. Next week, I’m moderating a panel at the Youth, Tech, Health conference in San Francisco.
  • Legislators! I met with staffers from Councilmembers Jackson, Lander, Lappin and Dickens offices this week about how they can address street harassment in their communities.
  • Book! I’m part of a new book called How Will You Create Positive Change! The book is by a young woman named Leah Oviedo who interviewed 16 people who are making positive changes in their communities. You can read it for FREE online,



  • Hollaback Belfast, our brand new site, has its first radio interview this evening with BBC!! Hollas will talk about the launch of their new site and get the word out about Hollaback! Way to go Belfast!
  • Hollaback! Philly‘s new anti-street harassment ads went up in the SEPTA trains this week! Thanks to the team, Philadelphia commuters can learn about street harassment and their right to feel safe on their way to work.phillyads
  • Hollaback! Boston is doing some incredible work for Sexual Assault Awareness Week! This past monday, the hollas hosted an Anti-Street Harassment Workshop at BU, discussing the meaning of street harassment and how it affects LGBTQ folks and people of color. The site then lead a chalkwalk on thursday with Voices for Choice.
  • Hollaback! Berlin is still collecting music for the “Cats against Catcalling” Compilation! Hollas are working hard with Riot Grrrl to compile their 6th compilation! You can submit here.
  • Hollaback! Buenos Aires is raising awareness on their site regarding forms of sexual harassment such as stalking and non-consensual picture-taking. Hollas also recently played an important role in a Reflection Group on street harassment.
  • Hollaback! Fredericksburg is getting ready for Anti-Street Harassment Week. Hollas are kicking off the week in a big way this Sunday with their anti-street harassment chalking event!
  • Hollaback! Brussels is joining the “My Choice Not Yours” campaign! The project was started by inspirational female fashiondesigner, Rachida Aziz. Hollas have just signed the charter and are participating all the way with this project! The team is also hosting a free self-defense workshop on April 20.
  • Hollaback! Gent is organizing SIX chalk walks for Anti-Street Harassment week next week. Monday April 8, Hollas will launch a six-day marathon of chalk walks all over Gent! Stay tuned for pictures and stories!
  • Hollaback! Desmoines interviewed cartoonist Kate Leth! Kate is a webcomic artist, cartoonist, and illustrator based in Halifax, using her creative work to raise awareness about street harassment. Read the full interview here. The team is also getting ready for their chalk walk next week!
  • Hollaback! Ottawa welcomes Lisane Thirsk to the team! Lisane did her Masters research on street harassment with Hollaback! Mexico Df and will now be working as Ottawa’s new Policy & Research Officer! Welcome, Lisane! Hollaback! Ottawa is getting ready for their chalkwSELFdefenseHollaGarance2013-1alk next Monday April 8. AND, in partnership with WISE: Women’s Initiatives for Safer Environments, the team is organizing a community dialogue on public transit safety called Talking Back! The free event will take place in May. Holla’s are hoping it will be a space for people to share their stories and for the community to come together to brainstorm solutions.
  • Hollaback! Czech boldy hollas back at a longstanding Czech Easter tradition. In this week’s post titled, “No, Sweetie, You Can’t Hit Women and I Don’t Care If It’s Easter!”, the team calls attention to the widely accepted Easter tradition of whacking women in the behind as being sexist in nature. Definitely worth a read!
  • Hollaback! Sheffield is preparing an amazing series of events for International Anti-Street Harassment Week. The team will be kicking off the week with a discussion and workshop with the Sheffield Feminist Network where the group will be exploring experiences and reactions to street harassment. Hollas will then host their Craftivism workshop and a Zine-making workshop on tuesday and wednesday.
  • Hollaback! Bmore blogger Rebecca Evans has two great posts up this week. The first is an eloquent discussion of the Steubbenville trial and media coverage. The second gives us a new perspective on recent feminist critique of pop sensation Beyonce. Read away, hollas!
  • Hollaback! RVA guest blogger Afton Bradley wrote an awesome blog this week on the proposed law in Arizona which promotes discrimination of trans folks when it comes to using restrooms. An important issue for sure, definitely worth a good read.

Thanks for all your support — and keep on holla’ing back!


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Story, transphobic, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: transphobia

Boston university students verbally harassed me. I am a trans girl and they were making fun if my Halloween costume calling me, “he and him.” They said I looked like Gene Simmons of KISS.

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Story, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: #walking

Walking down the street, two men shouted “You look good, baby!” at me.

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demonstration, Story, Verbal

Jessica’s story: “they still make me cry whenever I think of them”

I’m 27 now and these are few things that happened many years ago. One instance was more than 18 years ago and another happened about fourteen years ago. They’ve stuck with me and they still make me cry whenever I think of them.
The first instance happened on a Friday, I remember because my dad got paid that day and we (my mom, siblings, and I) were going to go grocery shopping at a shopping center a few minutes from our house. We were hungry so my mom took us to a McDonald’s in the shopping center and we sat in our car to eat before going into the grocery store. My mom was in the front seat and my sister and I were in the very back. A homeless man came up to our car and asked my mom for some money. She gave him some change and apologized saying that that was all that she had to give (we didn’t have very much money). He then angrily told her something in Spanish and my mom responded back to him and tried to roll up the window as fast as she could, but the homeless man threw the change at my mom before she could completely roll up the window. We were scared and my Mom was crying/upset. My mom then found the security guard that was supposed to be in front of the store and told him what happened and he said they called the police. We waited and waited in our car for what seemed like forever, but the police never came and we just went home. When we got home we told my dad and brothers what happened. I remember my sister and I telling them that we thought he asked our mom for some of our food before he threw the money. I now know what he said to my mom. She said that after she gave him the money and apologized he said, “then give me one of your daughters” I don’t remember when I found this out, but that incident still haunts/disgusts me to this day to the point where I will not go to that shopping center/area of the city anymore. It scared me so much that I won’t give homeless people money.The one time I gave someone a couple of dollars a few months ago, I had my brother give it to the man while I was in the car with the doors locked and the windows up.
The second time I was in junior high and walking home from school when it happened. I passed by an apartment building that was down the street from my house. The street was pretty lonely and there were construction workers on the roof that started saying things to me when I passed by. The word “chica” was used a lot in conjunction with the stupid “ch, ch” sound. I just ignored them and walked even faster then I was already walking just to get home as quickly as possible. I was to scared to tell my parents what happened at the time. I felt so disgusted and ashamed of what happened. Now I realize that I shouldn’t feel that way, those assholes should for acting the way they did.
Those things taught me that if something does happen, I’m going to do my damndest to fight back. Thank you for this site/movement and for listening.

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Stalking, Story, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: no woman should have to worry about that.

I bartend, and one night a man entered who was chatting and flirting with me. He proceeds to offer, after I deny his offers to go out with him, fifty dollars to both my manager and the other bartender in exchange for me. Both were weirded out and decided I needed to leave. Upon leaving he decides to leave too and begins to follow me home. Thankfully my manager called me to alert me to the fact he was following me, but no woman should have to worry about that. I still see him at work sometimes.

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