Internship in Pontedera: Street Harrassment

“Street harassment is a form of sexual harassment that consists of unwanted comments, wolf-whistlings, “catcalling”, and other actions by strangers in public areas.”

It makes you feel objectified and is a form of disrespect towards you from the harasser.

This is sort of a sensitive topic to talk about but I feel the need to let you know of the sort of bull-shit some of us had to go through. If you wear a headscarf, get ready to be verbally and sometimes physically harassed by the Arab guys just lingering around in the whole of Pontedera for this only purpose.

Perhaps, I never experienced such sort of uncivilized behavior from those men because I never wore a head scarf in Italy? It was really strange. It was as if they had some kind of a fetish for girls who wore a Hijab.

It personally offended me to see that my friends had to give up a leisure walk just because they were followed by some creepy man. It ruined my mood, every time I’d see an asshole annoy my friend at the COOP. I had to scream my throat out at one such guy to leave my friend alone.

And that day, it was the “Notte Bianca” in Pontedera! He followed us the whole way and made us feel threatened when everyone should have been enjoying the signing and dancing going around us. I ended up with a severe head ache and a hoarse voice that night.

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I just want you to know that it is not Ok! Don’t remain silent. If there’s a nearby security guard, inform him of the boys that are annoying you. Give them death stares, pepper spray their eyes, do whatever the hell it takes to chase these metaphoric dogs away. 

Read this article that I wish I had read before encountering these men.

Just don’t remain silent.

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