“I Was Upskirted on the DC Metro”

Location: Smithsonian Metro Stop
Time: Morning Rush Hour (5am-9:30am)

I was in one of the last cars on the metro and was one of the last people to leave the station this morning. The other person was a man — mid-40s, dark hair, wearing a suit. He wasn’t close enough for me to get a better description and was staring at his smartphone as I passed through the gates. On the escalator, I thought a breeze was lifting the back of my skirt, but it was that guy behind me lifting it as he walked past.

I wish my reaction was something more than a resigned, “oh well, it happens.” I’m very aware of my surroundings (especially after past incidences), and it felt like not being hyper-vigilant for 10 seconds is how this happened.

Submitted 10/14/14 by “A.”

CASS is launching RightRides, a service to provide free rides home for women and LGBT people, from 12am-3am on Friday, October 31st. Rides, which are made possible by a partnership with Zipcar, will be operated by driver/navigator teams consisting of trained, screened volunteers. Save the number in your phone now: 202-556-4232!

Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault? Share your story to help raise awareness about the pervasiveness and harmful effects of street harassment. All submissions are posted anonymously unless otherwise specified.

If you experience or have experienced sexual harassment on the DC Metro system: Whether the event is happening at the moment or occurred months ago, we strongly encourage you to report to Metro Transit Police (MTP): www.wmata.com/harassment or 202-962-2121. Reporting helps identify suspects as well as commons trends in harassment. You can program MTP’s number into your phone so you can easily reach them when needed.

If you need assistance in coping with public sexual harassment or assault, please contact the DC Rape Crisis Center (DCRCC) 24/7 crisis hotline at 202-333-RAPE (202-333-7279).

Sexually Harassed on Metro: “I Reported It, But The Metro Official Laughed At Me.”

Sexually Harassed on Metro: "I Reported It, But The Official Laughed At Me."
Sexually Harassed on Metro: “I Reported It, But The Metro Official Laughed At Me.”

 

Location: DC Metro; red line to Forest Glen
Time: Morning Rush Hour (5am-9:30am)

I walked into the elevator and a man waited to (approx. 45-50) follow me in. He looked me up and down three times before pushing the button to go down to the train level. I hurriedly walked to a different end of the platform and saw him walk far enough away, but when I got onto the train and sat down I saw him come in to my car at the very last second. Once we started moving, he started screaming in my direction about “fat pussy” and “big booty butt holes” and how “bitches be lying”.

I had the Metro harassment number up to call, but luckily he stepped out at the Silver Spring stop. I reported it at the Chinatown Metro station when I got off, but the official laughed at me for reporting someone who didn’t physically attack me.

I reported it again at Forest Glen the next day, and, thankfully, that official was a bit more receptive. I haven’t seen that man again, but according to the Forest Glen official, he’s around a lot.

Submitted 1/16/14 by “LH.”
Emphases by CASS. 

Take a stand against public sexual harassment and assault: Donate now.

NOTE FROM CASS: As many CASS followers know, we helped push for WMATA to implement its first-ever reporting and tracking system for sexual harassment and assault in 2012. Starting in 2014, all 3,000 of WMATA’s frontline employees — including Metro Transit Police, bus drivers, station managers and more — will be trained in recognizing and responding to public sexual harassment and assault. We’re tweeting and sending this post their way to make sure they know this can’t come soon enough.


Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault? Submit your story to help raise awareness about the pervasiveness and harmful effects of street harassment. All submissions are posted anonymously unless otherwise specified.

If you experience or have experienced sexual harassment on the DC Metro system: Whether the event is happening at the moment or occurred months ago, we strongly encourage you to report to Metro Transit Police (MTP): www.wmata.com/harassment or 202-962-2121. Reporting helps identify suspects as well as commons trends in harassment. Recommended tip: Program MTP’s number into your phone so you can easily reach them when needed. If you need assistance in coping with public sexual harassment or assault, please contact the DC Rape Crisis Center (DCRCC) 24/7 crisis hotline at 202-333-RAPE (202-333-7279).

“I Intervened in Sexual Harassment Taking Place on the Metro”

An anti-sexual harassment ad put in place by WMATA as a result of CASS’s campaigning.

Location: Yellow Line, DC Metro
Time: Late Night (12am-5am)

I was on the Metro last night, coming home by myself. I was seated next to a group of three young men, who were talking to a young woman. Although their attentions would have made me uncomfortable, she appeared to be flirting back, so I didn’t say anything. The young men then started making comments about their friend at the other end of the car. I looked down, and saw a fourth young man talking to a young woman who clearly did not want the attention. I thought about intervening, knowing that the most cutting-edge public health research on sexual harassment focuses on the role of bystanders. But honestly, it was 1 am on the Metro, I was alone, and I was afraid of what would happen to me if I pissed off a group of four guys.

So anyway, the young man eventually left the woman alone and came to join his friends. He made several derogatory comments about her, to them. I thought it was over, but then he went back two more times to badger her, even though she was yelling at him to leave her alone. Finally I said something to his friends. I told them that she clearly didn’t want this attention, and that they should pull him off her. As predicted, they turned it back on me, and started making degrading sexual comments to me.

Finally we reached our stop. Everyone got out. I checked to make sure that the young woman was ok. She told me she was drunk, but not so drunk that she didn’t know what was going on. And that she had mace in her purse and felt fine. On my way out, I reported the incident to the station manager. He was actually super polite and took the whole thing seriously. He told me that there is a Metro police officer on the platform, and that he would keep an eye on it until the guys left.

The whole thing made me feel scared and unsafe, and extremely disempowered. Most of all, I was upset that my fear for my own safety kept me from intervening. I don’t feel guilty; self preservation is important, too. But I was sad that that’s the way reality works.

Emphases by CASS.
Submitted 12/8/13 by “RB.”

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Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault? Submit your story to help raise awareness about the pervasiveness and harmful effects of street harassment. All submissions are posted anonymously unless otherwise specified.

If you experience or have experienced sexual harassment on the DC Metro system: Whether the event is happening at the moment or occurred months ago, we strongly encourage you to report to Metro Transit Police (MTP): www.wmata.com/harassment or 202-962-2121. Reporting helps identify suspects as well as commons trends in harassment. Recommended tip: Program MTP’s number into your phone so you can easily reach them when needed. If you need assistance in coping with public sexual harassment or assault, please contact the DC Rape Crisis Center (DCRCC) 24/7 crisis hotline at 202-333-RAPE (202-333-7279).

“I Was Chastised for Speaking Back to Street Harassment”

street harassed in dc
“I Was Chastised for Speaking Back to Street Harassment”

Location: Mt. Vernon Square/Convention Center Metro Station
Time: Evening Rush Hour (3:30pm-7:30pm)

I was getting off the train at the Mt. Vernon Square/Convention Center stop for a train headed towards Greenbelt. I had headphones on, but I saw a man gesturing at me. In a break between songs, I heard him say, “That’s a nice dress.” I replied, “I didn’t ask your opinion.” The man proceeded to tell me, “That’s not how you talk to a gentleman.” I rolled my eyes and exited the train. He remained seated.

Emphases by CASS.
Submitted 10/30/13 by Anonymous.


Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault? Submit your story to help raise awareness about the pervasiveness and harmful effects of street harassment. All submissions are posted anonymously unless otherwise specified.

If you experience or have experienced sexual harassment on the DC Metro system: Whether the event is happening at the moment or occurred months ago, we strongly encourage you to report to Metro Transit Police (MTP): www.wmata.com/harassment or 202-962-2121. Reporting helps identify suspects as well as commons trends in harassment. Recommended tip: Program MTP’s number into your phone so you can easily reach them when needed. If you need assistance in coping with public sexual harassment or assault, please contact the DC Rape Crisis Center (DCRCC) 24/7 crisis hotline at 202-333-RAPE (202-333-7279).

Harassed at the Navy Yard Metro: “Don’t touch me!”

Street harassment in DC, navy yard
Harassed at the Navy Yard Metro: “Don’t touch me!”

Location: Navy Yard Metro Station
Time: Evening Rush Hour (3:30pm-7:30pm)

I was waiting for the train to Greenbelt after work, when a unkempt man touched my arm. I had headphones on and didn’t see him approach, so I jumped and yelled, “Don’t touch me!” He started swearing at me and yelling, I think because I embarrassed him. He then followed me on to my [train]car and stared at me. At Waterfront, I snuck onto another car.

Emphases by CASS.
Submitted 10/30/13 by Anonymous.


Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault? Submit your story to help raise awareness about the pervasiveness and harmful effects of street harassment. All submissions are posted anonymously unless otherwise specified.

If you experience or have experienced sexual harassment on the DC Metro system: Whether the event is happening at the moment or occurred months ago, we strongly encourage you to report to Metro Transit Police (MTP): www.wmata.com/harassment or 202-962-2121. Reporting helps identify suspects as well as commons trends in harassment. Recommended tip: Program MTP’s number into your phone so you can easily reach them when needed. If you need assistance in coping with public sexual harassment or assault, please contact the DC Rape Crisis Center (DCRCC) 24/7 crisis hotline at 202-333-RAPE (202-333-7279).

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