Wolf-Whistling Has Been Recognised As A Hate Crime

The sexist street harassment will now be tackled by the police


Have you ever avoided a particular street because you know it's somewhere that you'll get unwanted attention? Or felt unsafe or vulnerable in public places? 

Hopefully, that's about to change.

Nottinghamshire police have become the first in the country to include public misogynist acts in their category of things punishable as hate crimes.

Women in the area are being urged to report any street harassment, including unwanted approaches, to the police, as they have now received training to deal with the matter.


This is a positive step towards the legal and institutional recognition of catcalling as a distressing and gendered act that women are forced to experience regularly.

Aged 18-24, 85 per cent of women have experienced unwanted sexual attention whilst in public, and 45 per cent have actually experienced unwanted sexual touching, according to End Violence Against Women.

Walking the streets as a woman could soon get safer

Such a high figure amounts to very significant portion of young women being harassed in the street, simply because they're female. 

The new policy recognises and addresses this, by defining misogynist hate crime as 'incidents against women that are motivated by an attitude of a man towards a woman, and includes behaviour targeted towards a woman by men simply because they are a woman.'

A hate crime is any crime motivated by prejudice, which includes homophobia, racism, and crimes based upon a person's ethnicity or religion.

The attention that's being drawn to street harassment is a brilliant step towards combatting it, which may encourage other police forces to follow the Nottinghamshire force's lead, as Sue Fish, Chief Constable in Nottinghamshire's police force 'this is a national issue.'

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