The High Council for Equality between Women and Men conducted a survey asking women whether they’ve been sexually harassed on Paris trains.
The participants said yes.
All 600 women surveyed reported experiencing some form of sexual harassment when riding the Paris Metro.
The shocking results of the poll where sent to France’s Health Minister, Dr. Marisol Touraine late last week. The minister promised to officially respond to the report within a few weeks.
The term “sexual harassment” was described in the study as “the imposition of any kind of words or behavior that are intended to create a situation that is intimidating, humiliating, degrading, or offensive.”
Around 50 percent of the respondents said that they experienced unwanted sexual overtures before the age of 18.
One respondent, age 26, had this to say about the state of riding around in trains in Paris:
The men in Paris take a lot of liberties… it’s like they don’t really care what they say or how it might make someone feel.
Sometimes I deliberately change train carriages if there are lots of men. I’d rather not put myself in a situation where I’m alone with only men because I know what would happen.
Sadly, this isn’t the only exceptional case of harassment occurring on public transit in a major city. Sexual harassment is so pervasive in parts of Hong Kong, that its mass transit system, or MTR, is considering women-only train cars and buses on some of it’s routes.