Sexual Harassment

How Every Women Suffers

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When a women walks down the street in any country in 2014 she has a chance of being sexually harassed. We might view America and other first world countries as modern societies where everyone is equal, but the truth is “No society treats its women as well as its men,” the United Nations says. “At least one out of every three women is likely to be beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused in her lifetime. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon added.

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Sexual Harassment happens everywhere, but one of the worst places it occurs is in Egypt.

According to a 2013 United Nations study, says FP's Elias Groll, “virtually all Egyptian women have been victims of sexual harassment." A whopping 99.3 percent of the women studied report having been sexually harassed. The most common form of harassment, was inappropriate touching: 96.5 percent of the women who'd been harassed said they'd been physically assaulted.

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The women in the study reported being harassed everywhere, from malls to markets to public transit, and just out on the street. Women were whistled and yelled at, touched and stalked, subjected to sexual innuendo and to men exposing themselves. The women reported that in the vast majority of cases—84.6 percent—passers-by did nothing to stop the harassment or support the woman.

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Sexual harassment really scares women, and rightfully so. It also doesn't help them have any voice or advancement in society when they are harassed everywhere they go. Women have the right to walk in public without being assaulted and abused.“This is something that scares me, as a girl,” one woman told the BBC in 2012 when discussing the surge in mob-style sexual attacks. “When I want to go out, walking the street and someone harasses or annoys me, it makes me afraid. … This stops me from going out. I try to be excessively cautious in the way I dress so I avoid wearing things that attract people.”

What It's Like For a Women To Walk Down One of the Busiest Bridges in Cairo

Creepers on the Bridge
Sexual harassment is not a problem only in Egypt, of course. Worldwide, “rape culture” continues to enable sexual harassment and assault. In the U.S., one in four women reports being sexually harassed at work, and 65 percent report being harassed on the street. This abuse against women needs to stop. We call ourselves an advanced civilization but the problems from the past are still here and unchanging. Americans are trying to help everybody else but we still don't know how to treat our citizens. All countries need to start changing the way they treat women and start treating Sexual harassment like the problem it really is.