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Research shows that adolescent girls and young women experience sexual harassment, often on a daily basis, when using public transport – be it from other passengers or drivers and ticket sellers themselves. Strong gender norms around sexual harassment prevail which prevent adolescent girls and young women from moving freely and safely around the city. This includes blaming the adolescent girls and young women for being survivors of gender-based violence instead of placing the blame and onus on the perpetrators. There is often little or no support from drivers, ticket sellers, or bystanders when they witness girls being sexually harassed.
Addressing gender norms and how they influence girls’ perceptions of and actual safety is therefore key to the Safer Cities for Girls programme. This guidance addresses the key questions around how to change gender norms and the corresponding behavior within the informal and formal transportation sectors to decrease gender-based violence for adolescent girls when using transportation services.
The first section of this document includes guidance on what social and gender norms are and how they operate in the transport sector. This is followed by a brief checklist of key aspects to take into account when developing a gender norm change strategy to address sexual harassment on public transport.
The third section highlights the importance of developing key messages on addressing sexual harassment on public transport, while the last section compiles examples of activities that aim to tackle gender norms around sexual harassment in the transport sector. Some of the activities are based on previous experiences of the country offices, while others have been implemented by different organisations working to tackle gender norms on public transport. For each activity, an overview has been developed that can be used by the teams to add more information based on their experiences and contextual needs. Each activity overview includes the aims and objectives, key components, target group(s), tips for the facilitator/things to take into account and links to other resources.