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Portland, Maine joined the Hollaback! movement in 2011, and is dedicated to giving those who experience street harassment the space to fight back and to turn the tables on harassers. If you experience street harassment, post about it. Track it on our map or use our app (available for iPhones and Androids) to help us work toward ending street harassment in Portland, Maine!
Hollaback! is a movement dedicated to ending street harassment using mobile technology. Street harassment is one of the most pervasive forms of gender-based violence and one of the least legislated against. Comments from “You’d look good on me” to groping, flashing and assault are a daily, global reality for women and LGBTQ individuals. But it is rarely reported, and it’s culturally accepted as ‘the price you pay’ for being a woman or LGBTQ. At Hollaback!, we don’t buy it.
We believe that everyone has a right to feel safe and confident without being objectified. Sexual harassment is a gateway crime that creates a cultural environment that makes gender-based violence okay. There exists a clear legal framework to reproach sexual harassment and abuse in the home and at work, but when it comes to the streets—all bets are off. This gap isn’t because street harassment hurts any less, it’s because there hasn’t been a solution. Until now. The explosion of mobile technology has given us an unprecedented opportunity to end street harassment—and with it, the opportunity to take on one of the final new frontiers for women’s rights around the word.
By collecting women and LGBTQ folks’ stories and pictures in a safe and share-able way with our very own mobile phone applications, Hollaback! is creating a crowd-sourced initiative to end street harassment. Hollaback! breaks the silence that has perpetuated sexual violence internationally, asserts that any and all gender-based violence is unacceptable, and creates a world where we have an option—and, more importantly—a response.
Anti-discrimination and Comments policy
Replacing sexism with racism is not a proper holla back. Ditto to classism, homophobia, transphobia, and the usage of any other identity signifier. In our experience, street harassment comes from people in every facet of our cultures and every strata of society. We ask that you refrain from referencing the attributes of your harasser because this movement is about changing societal values, not pointing fingers. If you feel those details are important to your story, please make sure its relevance is explained clearly and constructively in your post.
We think that telling your experiences with street harassment is an incredibly bold act. We admire the people that have the strength to do it, and we want their experience to be 100% empowering. Too often survivors of sexual violence do not get the respect they deserve. That culture stops here, with our short & badass comments policy.
1. No woulda coulda shoulda. Keep any advice you have for what the person should have done in the situation to yourself. We know you’re just trying to help, but street harassment has a way of filling folks with self doubt and they don’t need your encouragement.
2. No hater language. If you feel a desire to want to leave a comment along the lines of “you deserve it,” or “you’re a bitch/slut/ho” try slapping some sense into yourself instead, cause we’re not listening (or posting) that nonsense.
3. Debate ideas, not people’s lives. If we post an idea or a concept on the site that you don’t like, tell us about it. If we post a someone’s personal experience on the site that you don’t like, too bad. We think they’re awesome.