Tania’s Story: Stop harassing me

Thank you Parisians in the Pernety metro, December 2008 for standing like marble statues when a man leered at me, followed me around and nearly made me fall onto the rails when inching further from him. Thank you Parisians standing in the metro to Montparnasse Bienvenue, December 2008 when a drunk fool kept making lewd comments at my friends and me, and for calling my friend “a bit chocolate” because of her Indo-Mauritian ethnicity. Thank you people of Bordeaux Rue Sainte Catherine, April 2009 for sniggering when a man spat on my friend and me calling us dirty immigrants. Thank you people on Rue Mouffetard, July 2009 for laughing when some douchebag yelled “Suce ma bite” (suck my dick) at me, just because I was eating a baguette. And the gold medal goes to my wonderful neighbours for 9 months’ worth of daily cat calls, “Bienvenue a Hong Kong” (welcome to Hong Kong), kicking footballs at my feet because it was “fun” trying to make me trip, and repeating my sentences like parrots/kids when I tried to get you to stop harassing me.

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Hollaback! Supports Healthy Masculinity

In the twenty-first century, no brand, company, organization, or movement is complete without some visual representation. The Healthy Masculinity Action Project is no different. Now, with the “I Support Healthy Masculinity” icon, you can promote healthy masculinity and the Healthy Masculinity Action Project.

The Healthy Masculinity Action Project (HMAP) is a two-year national movement to develop new male leadership that role models strength without violence. The Healthy Masculinity Action Project begins in October with the Healthy Masculinity Summit in Washington, DC.

Despite only four words in the statement, “I Support Healthy Masculinity,” it says so much more. Supporting healthy masculinity is supporting communities that are free from street harassment and domestic violence, and lives that are better for women, children, and men. Generating conversations about healthy masculinity is a vital step in creating healthy relationships of all kinds.

As the weeks leading up to the Healthy Masculinity Summit continue, your support of HMAP will become increasingly critical in spreading the message of healthy masculinity.

So, do you support healthy masculinity?

Show it with the “I Support Healthy Masculinity” icon!

For more information, contact: [email protected]



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Hanna’s Story: “They Were Far Too Close for Comfort”

I had just finished hanging out with a guy I really liked at a restaurant down town and decided to walk the 200 feet to the public library to wait for my dad to come pick me up. I was dressed pretty cutely as I had just been on a date. It was raining and I was about half way to the library with a hundred feet or so to go. I stayed close to the Butler Center, (a public research outlet) under the eave, out of the rain. I saw two apparently homeless men approach me. “Hey pretty lady”, the first one called out as the other shot me a lecherous grin. I gave them my best ‘get the hell away from me’ look but they only came nearer. They essentially had me trapped up against the building. As someone who follows the Innocent Until Proven Guilty mindset I didn’t want to cry rape. What if they just wanted a little money? But now they were far to close for comfort. I was scared shitless. I couldn’t take on two men, and no one was out in the rain. But, out of nowhere another man was merely walking from one building to another like I, and saw the whole situation unfold. “Leave the young lady alone” he commanded the two men in a stern voice. They glanced at him but did not move. “I said leave her alone” he reiterated. At that they turned and walked on. “Thank you!” I cried out to my hero before booking it to the library. There, with my knees knocking, I phoned my dad and requested that he come inside and walk with me back to the car. Though I was not hurt it was terrifying and I hate to think what could have been.

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HOLLA ON THE GO: new submission from app

Just caught this guy taking upskirt photos on the downtown N train. Got off at Union Square

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Dear Hollabackers —

We are so grateful for your ongoing support! Here’s what’s new this week:

Campaign success!  We rounded out our campaign to end campus harassment — thank you to all who donated!

We held our first-ever city council briefing! We briefed council staff on our newly released research on street harassment with Cornell. Council staffers from 18 offices were in attendance, which was about 13 more than we were expecting considering it was the height of budget season.  Big thanks go to KC Wagner from Cornell, and Councilmember Ferreras’ office for helping us to put together the hearing.

We were in ELLE Quebec! Check out the link, here.

We moved into a slightly bigger office! With four of us crowded around one table, it was getting a little cramped.  On Thursday we moved into our new office on the 8th floor to make room for all our interns and volunteers!  Check out Sunny and Natalie taking care of business:

HOLLA and out —


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M. E.’s Story: “Keep your hands to yourself”

Today at a corner store in San Francisco my sister was grabbed by this man, whom she had never seen before. He cornered her and tried to hit on her, pulled on her skirt (like one does to see how full the skirt is), then grabbed her hand and kissed her all the way up her arm. She was terrified and broke away, but he followed her when she went out of the store. She called me in a panic. My sister lives in one of the most progressive cities in the country, and this is the second time this week she’s been harassed.

Taking one’s style of dress, appearance, or demeanor into account is irrelevant when talking about sexual harassment – NO ONE wants or invites or deserves this kind of behavior, no matter what they dress like or do on their own time – but even so, my sister dresses conservatively and told the man she had a husband at home. It didn’t matter, he kept going. No one in their right mind could say that this is acceptable behavior or that she “asked for it.”

Street harassment has happened to every woman I know. It’s happened to me. I’ve usually been too scared to say anything: it’s only recently I’ve learned I can tell a man “that’s not OK.” But I shouldn’t need to say that. Women deserve to feel safe when they go to the store. It’s something this schmuck should have learned in preschool: keep your hands to yourself.

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Only hours left: Margaret’s story about campus harassment


They called her a whore her freshman year. Now she wants to bring Hollaback to New York University.

Margaret is a student at a college in New York CIty. During her freshman year, she was walking across campus, when a group of men whom she did not know approached her and shouted that she was a whore. Margaret was confused and did not know what to do. She decided to keep on walking.

Soon, an older man came out of his store. The man, who was a complete stranger to Margaret, looked at her and said simply, “I’m so sorry that you had to go through that.”

In that moment, Margaret realized, “What just happened to me wasn’t okay–and it wasn’t normal.”

In Margaret’s story, a brave bystander intervened in a situation that was clearly wrong, and offered his support to a woman who was being harassed. The bystander’s brief statement created a powerful impact; Margaret immediately understood that sexual harassment was not normal, was not acceptable, and most importantly, was not her fault.

One changemaker creates another. When Margaret realized that what was happened to her was wrong, she decided to support others who were experiencing sexual harassment on campus. Now, Margaret is working with her feminist club to bring Hollaback to New York University this coming fall.

Today we’re asking you, “Can you be that brave bystander who helps stop campus harassment?” Since you don’t all own shops on college campuses, we’re empowering you stop sexual harassment at colleges across America in the following way.

Here’s how you can step up and help students like Margaret: by donating to Hollaback’s campaign to end sexual harassment on college campuses.

We know there are countless individuals out there who are brave enough to intervene when they see something happening that is clearly wrong. Use your voice and your power to show others what’s right, and donate to Hollaback!’s campaign against campus harassement. Our campaign ends tomorrow, so this is your last chance to speak up!




Congrats to all of our t-shirt contest winners:

Alison Bellavance

Megan Hunt

Andrea Pino

Courtney Young

Jaclyn Friedman

Corinne Warnshuis


Thank you to our supporters so far!

Emma McQuade-Terry Laurens Hunt

Myles Sorensen

Safe Streets AZ

Janos Marton

Heidi Patterson

David Leung

Isabel de Koninck

John Reid

Dana Edell

Carey Tan

Ashley Nease

Noelle McReynolds

Meredith Nudo

Kelsey Poole

Christina Macdonald

Meredith Hudson

Beth Lord

Alison Bellavance

Sally Laskey

David Lee

Bradford Perry

Liz Leahy

Jonathan Roth

Rachel Simon

Chad Musgrove

Loren Tripp

Sara Enright

Thao Nguyen

Peter Alsop

Julie Baumler

Courtney Young

Jaclyn Friedman

Sarah Carter

Marton Toth

Lauren Carmin

Deanna Zandt

Michael Maffei

Trent Wolbe

Marylouise Oates

Sara Tea

Paul Shalek

Allison Sesso

Kathleen Adams

Andrea Vial

Violet Kittappa

Raphael Rosenblatt

Rochelle K.

Naomi Kaufman

David Beasley

Marlboro College Women’s Resource Center

…and all our anonymous donors!


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New Comedy Video “Cat Called”


Here’s a new video from Chescaleigh, better known as the girl who did “Sh*t White Girls Say to Black Girls” — on street harassment! Check it out and let us know what you think!


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A Note To Men Who Want To Flirt With Women

Cross Posted from Hollaback! Boston

I’ve been looking for a way to describe this feeling that I’ve been thinking a lot about lately. It’s this feeling of always being on guard, of bracing myself for harassment, of anticipation and expectation of my boundaries being disrespected and breached. And I found exactly what I’ve been feeling described more articulately than I would be able to describe it myself.

Men who want to flirt with women have to realize: Women live in a state of continual vigilance about sexual safety. It’s like having a mild case of hay fever that never goes away. It’s not debilitating. You’re not weak. You’re not afraid. You just suck it up and get on with your life. It’s nothing that’s going to stop you from making discoveries, or climbing mountains, or falling in love. Sometimes you can almost forget about it. It doesn’t mean it’s not there, subtly sucking your energy. You learn to avoid situations that make it worse and seek out conditions that make it better.

If a female stranger is wary around you, it is not because she suspects you are a rapist, or that all men are rapists. It’s because a general level of circumspection is what vigilance requires. Don’t take it personally.

If this frustrates you, try to remember that women are blamed for lapsed vigilance. If a woman does get raped, everyone rushes to see where she let her guard down. Was she drinking? Was she alone? Was she wearing a short skirt? Did she go to a strange man’s room for coffee at 4am?

A woman must be seen to be vigilant as well as be vigilant. If she is deemed insufficiently vigilant, she will be at least partly blamed for any sexual violence that befalls her. If she’s regarded as downright reckless, that “evidence” can be used to completely exonerate her rapist. If it comes down to a he said/she said dispute over whether sex was consensual, as so many rape cases do, the dispute becomes a referendum on whether the woman seems like the sort of reckless person who would have sex with a stranger.

If a woman does go back to a strange man’s hotel room at 4am, even if she only wants a coffee and conversation, she’s more or less given him the power to rape her. No jury is going to believe she went up there for anything but sex. So, don’t be surprised if a stranger reacts badly to that suggestion.

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Hollaback! Featured in ELLE Quebec

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