Catcalls, grabbings and far more dangerous forms of sexual harassment have plagued women in public for years, and now one app wants to give them a tool to respond.
As reported by Torontoist.com, the "Not Your Baby" app, developed by the Toront-based Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children (METRAC), gives people a virtual place to find support in the face of harassment.
Composed of a grid format that allows the user to select who is doing the harassing, as well as the scenario in which it occurs, the app then recommends a response to the situation, based on submissions from other users (example: for a stranger on public transit, it suggests "Would you speak to your sister that way?").
“A lot of people said they had a hard time thinking of responses [to harassment] in the moment,” METRAC communications director Andrea Gunraj told Torontoist.
Numbers for sexual harassment are difficult to obtain, as it's estimated that only one in 10 incidents of sexual assault are ever reported, but the increase in recent incidents in Toronto neighbourhoods as of late demonstrate it remains a widespread issue.
Not Your Baby also includes facts and personal stories of harassment, as well as resources for those seeking help. It is currently available for free in the iTunes store, for use on iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad.