Happy Friday Hollas!
Here at Hollaback! HQ we keep on spreading the word that catcalls are not cool, especially for fun holidays like Halloween. This week we attended a couple of great events. CJ, our admin and program assistant and Rose, our intern, went to the Press Conference Calling for Comprehensive Sex Education Now at the City Hall. And our Interim Executive Director, Debjani, Natasha, our IREX Fellow, CJ and Rose went to the screening of Out in The Night, an amazing event co-organized by the Audre Lorde Project and the CUNY Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC). The #NJFour inspire us to be even more fierce in fighting street harassment!
And in Hollaback! around the world:
Akirah Robinson from Hollaback! Pittsburgh wrote an interesting article that you should definitely read if you want to know more about street harassment and the different effects street harassment has on women and LGBT folks.
Hollaback! Vegas is calling everyone who wants to contribute to their amazing zine called The League of Extraordinary Feminists to write to them and grab this great opportunity. For the December 2015 issue, they are looking for submissions of artwork that connect to: Human Sex Trafficking, the 1-year Hollaversary, Consent, or Active Bystander Intervention.
Hollaback! Twin Cities is looking for new site leaders. So if you are sick of all the catcalls and harassment on the streets in Twin Cities and wanna fight for women’s and LGBT folks’ safety, don’t wait any longer and apply!
Well, that’s it for this week! Have fun and remind people that costumes are not an invitation for catcalls!! Happy Holla-ween!
Until next week,
Holla and out!
One day I was waiting in the bus stop that I usually waited at and while I was waiting I was standing in front of a shop. A man that I did not know kept on staring at me. At first I thought he wanted to go to the shop so I moved but then he still kept staring at me and moved closer to me , at that point I was getting really scared he was not smiling or anything like that just looking at me constantly. The clothes I was wearing were not revealing just some jeans and a long sleeve shirt with a jacket over. I did not know what to do I just walked away and he started stalking me when i noticed this I ran and didn’t stop until he was out of sight and walked all the way home.
It has been an exciting week here at Hollaback! HQ! Our Interim Executive Director, Debjani Roy, held a training for NYPD Transit Lieutenants. Rose, our Intern from England, attended the YWCA’s special workshop celebrating A Week Without Violence with the exploration of diverse healing modalities. The whole Hollaback! HQ team took part in the celebration of A Week Without Violence with a touch of purple.
And in Hollaback! around the world:
Big news for Hollaback! Vancouver! They were nominated for Community Safety and Crime Prevention Award, which is given to individuals and groups that have made outstanding contributions to crime prevention and community safety. Congrats Vancouver! You rock!
Hollaback! Croatia participated at the First International Conference on Sexual Violence in Croatia and their important work was mentioned by Prof. Liz Kelly, as a great contribution towards the global fight against sexual violence and generally violence against women.
Hollaback! Italy had an awesome event this week! They were in Torino, in Casa Arcobaleno, together with Gruppo Giovani Torino Youngsterland, to talk about street harassment of women and LGBTQI persons. They also had a chalkwalk in Torino sharing important messages around the city. Great job Italy!
Hollaback! Vegas was at the Spring Preserve promoting their amazing zine. Contact them if you want to see their wonderful zine!
Rebecca Faria of Hollaback! Halifax guest lectured at a Dalhousie University English class about digital storytelling, community building and activism.
Hollaback! London is asking #wherearetheposters. They are trying to push their City to commit to posters on the public transport network. Their message is very important and we should all support them. In order to do that, take a selfie on public transport, wherever you are, and use the hashtag #wherearetheposters if you believe women and LGBT deserve safety while traveling.
Stay tuned for more news next week!
Holla and out!
A van full of boys passed by me and the driver yelled “wanna bang us?” out the window at me. He was going at least 10mph above the speed limit. No, I don’t want to bang you, and you don’t look cool driving your Mom’s minivan.
I was coming out of a large chain gas station, and there was a group of men hanging around an SUV who started to make sexual comments about my body. I ignored them and kept walking to my car. As I passed, I heard one of them say, “Oh, look at her get that power-walk on.”
Then another of them began to follow me and call after me. At this point, I was alarmed. So I turned around and told him to “Get away from me.” He kept walking toward me.
“You get away from me now,” I shouted. “Or I’m calling the police.”
I was safely on the road as I pulled around and from my vantage point could see there was actually a large group of them hanging around that SUV and neither going in nor coming out of the store. I pulled over, looked up the number of the store chain, and called their manager who promised to have the cops come and get rid of them. I wish I could have done the report myself, but at least the message was sent.
I was waiting to be served at a bar. A guy came up and stood really close to me, acting creepy, and said “oh mmm damn you are so sexy, I’ll buy you a drink and you can come dance with me gorgeous”
I ignored him and carried on looking forward, not in the mood to even reply. He waved his hand right in front of my face saying “hey don’t be so rude, why are you ignoring me I offered to buy you a fucking drink”.
I said “I don’t want you to buy me a drink and I don’t want to talk to strangers, I’m just here with my friends”.
So then he said “well that’s fucking rude it’s just a drink. Don’t know why I even started talking to you in the first place, you’re ugly as pig shit” and leant over the bar to shout at the barman “don’t serve this bitch she’s rude as fuck”.
So you called me sexy and gorgeous until I didn’t want to talk to you then I became a bitch and ugly as pig shit. And I was the rude one?
As usual, this week we were buzzing around like bees. Amongst all the action, Hollaback! HQ hosted one of two town halls on the new site leader program. We are so thrilled that so many of our site leaders are excited about it because we certainly are! We’ve also been working on some new and exciting partnerships and Natasha, our IREX fellow, attended a training institute organized by A Call to Men on prevention of violence against women.
And in the Hollaback! movement around the world:
Alicia Wallace of Hollaback! Bahamas lectured on “The Construction of Gender Throughout Bahamian History” at the College of Bahamas Talks on Race, Class and Gender. It’s only through understanding our histories that we will be able to take the patriarchy DOWN.
Hollaback! Peterborough was up to all kinds of coolness this week! They teamed up with the Draw the Line team, Kawartha Sexual Assault Center, and Courage Peterborough and organized a night of comedy, music, poetry and activism in support of the Draw the Line Campaign. Nice job!
Hollaback! Baltimore hosted a happy hour chat at Blue Pit BBQ, talking about street harassment, sharing stories, and planning the events of the fall ahead. We’re looking forward to seeing Bmore’s making deeper strides in their community this Fall.
That’s it for this week! Stay tuned for more Holla-news next week!
Holla and out!
The Hollaback! Team
I was walking down Durant Ave. around 10:45pm, just to get some chocolate chip cookies – they’re my favorite. Im wearing a half buttoned shirt (so unbuttoned at the top few buttons) and a low cut tank top, showing my chest, breasts and cleavage, but that shouldn’t matter for what happened next. (Im biologically male btw.) I was on my phone texting and I saw a group of 4 slightly bigger guys walking slower in the opposite direction. They must have seen my low cut tank and cleavage, because they firmly touched and cupped my breast and said “big titties!” and laughed. I froze. I had no idea what just happened. I don’t know who did this, but I ran to the cookie store, bought my cookies, and felt so angry and bewildered and frozen inside. I told one of my online close friends what happened, and she recommended I report it to Berkeley’s counseling center. I will never forget this every time I touch my body, it was such a violation of my body. And I like physical intimacy in the sense I like hugging my friends, holding their hands. But this was it. This was way way over a line I couldn’t handle.
My coworker and I (both women) were ending one of our regular lunchtime walks around the park when a guy started walking next to us and saying “Excuse me, excuse me”. We ignored him at first and hurry by him (there are a bunch of bike rental people at that entrance so you usually have to dodge a few people trying to get your attention like this). He kept walking very close to my coworker facing us.
And then the conversation went like this-
my coworker: sorry, no thanks
him: I just want to walk with you . . . (now shouting) I JUST WANT TO TELL YOU YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL
my coworker: I don’t want you to tell me that
(we abruptly change directions)
me: sorry we have to go
him (shouting): YOU DON’T WANT TO TALK TO A BLACK MAN, THAT’S FINE! YOU’RE RACISTS!
he kept shouting things along those lines until we had crossed the intersection and were out of ear shot.
All these incidents happened within a week and around the same subway station since its near my home:
1. I am not from New York or USA. I feel cold even when the locals do not. I was wearing a jacket and had the hood up and I passed by a bar. Two men were hanging outside it. One of them said, “Aww come on, it isn’t that cold. Want me to warm you up?”.
2. I was waiting to cross the street and someone cut the signal and crossed the street. He then turned around and was encouraging his friend to cross as well when he saw me. He kept staring at me till the light changed and I crossed. As I passed by him, he commented to his friend “She is gorgeous, isn’t she?” and his friend made an appreciative noise. I thought that was it but as I kept walking a sharp, loud whistle followed.
3. Two men were standing a couple of steps away from each other. I passed the first one by. He was like “hey baby, hey, you look fine. Mm-mmm.” As I was passing the next one, he was like “Is this man bothering you? If he is let me know. I will set him straight.” When they were behind me, the second one was like “at least I got a smile from her”. I didn’t smile at all.