Speaking up

Woman struck by harasser on Paris street sets up website for women to share their stories

Marie Laguerre, who posted online a video in which she is seen being hit by a man in the street, in Paris on August 1, 2018. (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)

The young woman who posted a shocking video of a man slapping her on the streets of Paris, after she called him out on making lewd comments, has launched a website that allows victims of harassment to share their stories.

Marie Laguerre, 22, created the online space for women to contribute anonymously, “because speaking is really important,” about their experiences “in the street, at work, in the private sphere.”

As well creating the Nous Toutes Harcelement (‘We are all harassed’) platform, Laguerre has been making the rounds of media organizations, capitalizing on her visibility to discuss the global problem of the harassment of women.

In an interview conducted in English for France 24, she unpacks why the video she shared has made such an impact.

“I think in this video you can see those comments, those whistles, those noises in the street — it was never ‘hitting on someone,’ it was violence. Because the video shows, if you say ‘no,’ you can be punched.

“I think it’s a very powerful video. It’s raising awareness and men are realizing how bad it is.”

On Wednesday night, French lawmakers officially passed a bill to make sexually harassing women in public a crime punishable by fines of up to $885.

Read the full story at The Guardian.

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