Rotterdam launches app to report harassment

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Thanks to a new Dutch app called ‘Stop-App’, people will be able to report cat-calling, whistling, hissing (it’s a thing here) and threats of many kinds on the streets of Rotterdam. As of 1 January 2018, this kind of behaviour will be punishable by law with fines starting at 190 euro and running up to 4100 euro or three months in jail.

Like me, you’re probably wondering if this will work or have any effect – who knows. The city claims that it can effectively combat this bad behaviour if people report it. As well, Rotterdam will have special agents on the streets talking to offenders, with action only if warranted. It’s the Netherlands, everybody talks things out first.

The app will also need people who make reports to let it use their phone location, but if the situation is dangerous, calling emergency number 112 is still the right thing to do. According to research in Rotterdam, some 84% of women between 18 and 45 have been sexually intimidated, half of which is afraid to go to certain places at night. Only 5% of women report the harassment, and the goal of the app is to make it easier and increase this percentage.

(Link: rijnmond.nl, Photo by William Hook, some rights reserved)

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