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My family and I travel to Boston multiple times a year, and we stop In the city of Philadelphia to mess around and sight see. Waking up unusually early one morning, I walked to a local bakery and bought a doughnut to give to someone that was homeless. As I was walking around, looking for someone to give it to, a man started walking with me. He said hi how are you? And I replied fine with a smile, automatically feeling awkward. He asked me if I knew where I was going, and I said yes, trying to give off the impression I didn’t want to talk, while trying to get some distance between us. He then started to ask me my name, and ask me how I “do it so well.”
Startled, I was at loss for words. I am most certainetly not shy and am quite assertive, but I was so caught off guard. I replied “Umm no thankyou I’m under age.” He then proceeded to follow me asking me if “it was because he’s black.” He continued to follow me to my hotel room, where thank god the door men saw my face, and didn’t let the man in. I have never been followed before, and it was very scary for me, only being 15.
It’s been a great week at Hollaback! HQ. Deputy Director Debjani Roy returned from Chicago where she spoke at a forum hosted by the Chicago Filmmakers Coop on the role of video and social media in addressing social justice issues. ED Emily May attended the Ford Foundation’s Netgain: The Digital Revolution Meets the Common Good, where she hung out with NYC Mayor de Blasio! We are eagerly preparing for HOLLA::Rev NYC on March 5th and HOLLA:Rev London on June 23rd-26th! See you there!
Debjani with HB Chicago site leader, Katie, and the women from obviweretheladies.com.
NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio at Netgain.
Check out what our sites around the world have been up to:
Hollaback! Bahamas guest lectured a sociology class on street harassment and proposed gender equality bills!
Hollaback! Baltimore led a workshop at UMBC on street harassment and harassment in the workplace earlier this week. This marks site leaders Shawna and Mel’s final workshop – they are stepping down as site leaders and becoming advisory board members for HB Baltimore after four years of incredible work. We are excited to welcome Brittany and Leah to the team as the new site leaders, and we wish Shawna and Mel the best of luck in their future projects!
Shawna and Mel, you have been incredible site leaders and partners in this work. It is without question that you brought significant changes in your beloved city of Baltimore and strengthened the movement to end street harassment globally. Endless gratitude and respect for all you have done! You will be missed!
Mel and Shawna at HOLLA::REV 2014
That’s all for now. Keep up the inspiring work!
My friend lives near SUNY New Paltz and we would always walk to her house from the middle school where he went. We always started getting honked at and cat called since sixth grade! Do you know how disgusting it is to be yelled at by college kids when you’re only 11? Guys need to learn that where not sexual objects thank you very much!
My roommate and I decided to walk down to a brewery at the end of our street for drinks after work one night. We grabbed two seats at the bar and ordered our drinks when this guy sitting next to us started talking to us, telling us how pretty we were. We tried to redirect the talk multiple times away from what was quickly becoming a weird and uncomfortable conversation. He then declared that I looked like a fourth grade teacher and he would fuck the shit out of me, and that my roommate looked like an eleventh grade teacher and – we cut in there, yelling at him to stop, the bartender that had heard it started yelling at him and he got up, yelled, I’m the bad guy, everyone hates me. I said no one hates you bro, you just can’t say that kind of shit to people. He left.
My roommate wrote him off as a drunk jerk, but I can’t seem to shake it. I can’t get over the feeling of being so objectified, can’t get over the pornish-talk directed at me, 100% unsolicited.
This past summer I worked with kids who are severely emotionally disturbed. While I dealt with a wide array of experiences on a daily basis, many extremely trying, one day I will never forget left me in tears. We took the kids to the library as we did on many days when it was too hot to be outside. I had the group of 13 year old boys that day (I was only 21 at the time) and often put up with inappropriate comments simply dismissing them as being “that” age. 3 of the boys and I were sitting in the entry way to the library as they were having issues staying quiet inside. One of them started joking that I was his girlfriend and the other took it a step further to start mentioning that “he got me pregnant” to every person walking in and out of the library. In the specific program I worked for, it was essential to keep our cool and try and re-shape behavior in a positive way. I explained several times to him that this was not appropriate behavior for a number of reasons. He continued until FINALLY the police officer working at the library came out and threatened to call security on him. It baffled me that A) probably 15 people of all different types passed by and didn’t say a word and B) that these types of behaviors are taught at such a young age. I honestly could never look at that boy the same after that and he was transferred to another group shortly after.
Around 9 pm I was waiting to cross a street. There weren’t any other pedestrians around so when a car drove by and someone screamed out “WHORE!” I knew it was directed towards me. As I stood there I couldn’t do anything but laugh since its winter here in Wisconsin and I was wearing a full length parka along with other warm, winter gear…there was nothing about me or my clothing that could have been considered “whore-ish” besides the fact that he could tell I was a woman. I felt threatened and dehumanized and was paranoid the rest of my walk home. Grow up and respect all women and pratice equality.
I live in the UK inner city. i usually dont ignore harrasment (no you not beying a bigger person if anything ignoring makes you feel like a smaller person). But this time felt scary and I was scared to shout back. I was on my own on empty street about to cross as two guys in car pulled window down saying hay ..pause….you are sh*t! Fuck you! You are really really shit!
All i did was noted the car plate number came home and dialed 999. Officer came to see me in an hour assuring this type of crime is taken very seriously.
He was traced, invited to the station, spoken to. The incident was crimed as public order offence gender motivated. He was shocked someone would report it and said this is what he usually does. He now has a criminal record.
Ladies please stop taking crap of people!
This week at the Hollaback! HQ, ED, Emily May testified at the City Council Hearing on campus sexual assault. HB’s deputy director Debjani Roy will be addressing the current status of the fight against street harassment and the importance of civic-minded social media video this Sunday (Feb. 8) at a forum hosted by the Chicago Filmmakers. Read about it here and/or RSVP through EventBrite! Both have also started taping a vlog series, with the help of Harry Potter Alliance’s super talented Lauren Bird!
And our sites around the world have been up to lots! Check it out!
Hollaback! Bahamas‘ Alicia Wallace was featured in The Eye Opener – a youth show on Guardian Talk Radio-Saturday morning to talk about street harassment.
Hollaback! Berlin director Julie Brilling talked to Deutsche Welle about the NYC viral video, how to define street harassment, and what can be done to prevent it. Check it out here! They also teamed up with the national student council to launch their #uni_SEX campaign to raise awareness of everyday sexism and harassment at universities.
Hollaback! Ottawa presented at Awesome Adventure Academy, a new indie con, and developed their anti-harassment policy!
Hollaback! Houston‘s Hermie Escamilla was interviewed by a blog correspondent in Austin, TX for Stop Street Harassment about transportation, social media, and community building.
That’s all for now! Holla and out!
HB Staff <3
He may have thought he was being “friendly” but a middle aged man grabbed me on the shoulder without my permission while commenting about how I looked and it just left me feeling extremely uncomfortable.
On my way into a restaurant, I passed an older man panhandling and he asked me for some spare change.
I ignored him and from behind me, I heard him yell a series of obscenities, i.e., “Fuck you, you fucking bitch!”
I quickly ducked into the restaurant and thankfully, he was gone by the time I left.