3 Ways to be an Effective Ally against Street Harassment

As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, I have joined the Board of Directors of Stop Street Harassment, a non-profit organization dedicated to ending gender-based street harassment worldwide.

While perusing through some of my archived posts, I came across a contribution to Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian’s The People Who Inspire Series that was written by Holly Kearl, Stop Street Harassment’s founder.

Among answering many other questions about her work and how SSH came to be, she also mentioned 3 things people can do to be effective allies against Street Harassment. I’d like to revisit her post and highlight those points according to Holly:

Stop Victim Blaming

“Believe someone and not blame them when they share a street harassment story. After being violated, humiliated and scared, the last thing someone needs to hear when they share their story is that it was their fault because of what they were wearing or where they were or to hear their story dismissed as “no big deal.” Offering emotional support and brainstorming ways to deal with future harassers can help the harassed person recover and feel empowered.”

Speak Up

“If one’s friends are harassing people, talking to them privately about how that’s not okay with you can go a long way toward preventing future harassment.”

Do Whatever You Can

“If one witnesses street harassment, creating a distraction, seeing if the harassed person is okay, or loudly stating, “That’s harassment and it isn’t okay” are examples for how to safely intervene. Just as it can be upsetting to a person who shares a harassment story to be disbelieved, it can be really upsetting to be harassed in a crowded area and have no one else say or do anything to help.

Additionally, allies are always welcome to share stories on the Stop Street Harassment blog about how they helped prevent or stop street harassment and they’re welcome to write guest blog posts about the issue in general.”

Are there any ways to be an effective ally against street harassment that you’d want to add? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Be on the lookout for more notes from me regarding the issue of street harassment in the future.

And Lastly….

Grace & Peace,

From Aspiring Humanitarian, Relando Thompkins, MSW

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Written by

I’m a Social Justice Educator and Aspiring Humanitarian who is interested in conflict resolution, improving intergroup relations, and building more equitable and inclusive communities.

“Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian” is my blog, where I write about issues of diversity, inclusion, equity, and social justice. By exploring social identities through written word, film & video, and other forms of media, I hope to continue to expand and enrich conversations about social issues that face our society, and to find ways to take social action while encouraging others to do so as well in their own ways.

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1 Response

  1. October 9, 2012

    […] Originally posted at http://www.relandothompkins.com/2012/10/05/3-ways-to-be-an-effective-ally-against-street-harassment/ […]

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