Safe & The City Reveals London’s Worst Streets for Harassment
A new mobile app was launched on March 8, 2018, to celebrate international women’s day. The app is named after the startup company which goes by the title of Safe & the City.
The main goal of the app is to reveal London’s worst areas for street harassment so that men and women can plan their routes around it.
Asgardia strives for true equality between all Asgardians and ensuring the safety of its residents is paramount, thus apps like these could be of use.
Safe & the City has been engineered to build personalized walking routes that circumvent areas with high numbers of reported sexual harassment incidents.
Routes are based around information gathered from crime data, the amount of lighting on a street, the number of businesses open and crowdsourced reports of sexual harassment on the street.
The CEO of Safe & the City, Jillian Kowalchuk got the idea for the app after she moved from Vancouver to London.
Kowalchuk said she was using CityMapper and Google Maps to find her way around but realized these apps didn’t necessarily take her down the safest routes.
One day she was forced to walk down a dark alley because her maps told her it was the fastest way and she didn’t know how else to get to where she was going she was catcalled and felt particularly distressed. That’s the day she decided she wanted to do something to help address sexual harassment in the city.
Thus, the company’s app developers worked in conjunction with the Metropolitan Police to locate areas in London which have a high risk of crime.
Kowalchuk also stated that she realized it is often the case that women are reluctant or afraid to report harassment. So, Safe & the City works by offering its users a real-time map of London that outlines the areas where women or men have experienced harassment.
It has a detailed key for “assault”, “catcalling”, “commenting”, “groping”, “indecent exposure”, “stalking”, “taking pictures” and “other”.
Those who use the app are able to anonymously report if they have experienced harassment and then the map is updated for other users to see.
Safe & the City trusts that all reported incidents are genuine.
Furthermore, if someone does find themselves in a dangerous situation, they can use the app to alert the police by using the “call for help” button.
Kowalchuk hopes that the app will not only help individuals but also encourage businesses to take harassment more seriously.
She stated that if someone reports an incident of sexual harassment at a business then uses the app to report hopefully people will start to avoid that place.
Thus, making businesses more aware of incidents which take place in their establishment.
Safe & the City is now looking to expand their app across the country.
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