Last week, we partnered with Washington Area Bicyclist Association’s (WABA) Women & Bicycles group to conduct a free workshop on facing street harassment while biking. We spent the evening with around 30 fabulous lady cyclists, sharing our expertise on responding to street harassment, being an active bystander, and mobilizing your community to prevent public sexual harassment and assault.
CASS trainers discussed several direct anti-harassment response strategies — a favorite was the all-purpose statement, courtesy of CASS friend Marty Langelan: “Stop harassing people! I don’t like it. No one likes it. Show some respect.” The group also lifted the issue to the societal level, briefly exploring the concept of bystander intervention and its importance in stopping public sexual harassment assault.
But, as always, we learned just as much from the workshop participants as they learned from us! Even though many cyclists feel powerful and comfortable on the saddle, they also feel particularly vulnerable to harassment when it comes from drivers or other bikers. And from a brief survey given to participants at registration, we know that a majority of them don’t think there are any safer public transportation options in DC.
We’re so excited to welcome these kickass cyclists to the fold as anti-street harassment activists! We can’t wait to see everyone — bikers and non-bikers alike — holding our community accountable for creating safe ways to move around the city.
PHOTOS: CASS Reclaims the Streets with the 19th Amendment Alleycat!
We Asked, You Told: Your Stories of Street Harassment While Biking
Over 250 DC Women Expected to Participate in Grassroots, Anti-Harassment Biking Event