Did you know that 72.3% of women are going out just to listen to music or dance?
Clubs, bars, parties and other night events are really nice spaces to free ourselves from the weight of our daily life routines and daytime oppressions. Many of us go out to have fun, meet up with friends, listen to good music, free our bodies while dancing, and meet new people! So these should be places for positive and libertarian experiences, right?
The results of our research demonstrated that several people, particularly women, transgender, non-binary and gender diverse people have to deal with sexist harassment, sexualized intrusive behaviours when going out, and men are identified as the main perpetrators. These disparities are based on a rape culture that teaches men that a no of a woman is not really a no and that they have to fight hard for their consent. This culture also teaches women that they have to accept the non-wanted sexualized advances of men, based on the myth that they are not biologically able to “resist” or control themselves. However, these ideas are totally outdated fairytales! Regardless of her* reasons, a no of a woman is always a NO! Regardless of how hurtful this can be for “night hunters” when going out, she doesn´t need charming princes nor ogres fighting for her consent, instead, she needs space to enjoy the night and enjoy herself!
Current number of organisations in Portugal: 2
Did you know that only 20.8% of men are identifying sexist jokes as sexualised violence?
So is a stupid sexist joke a crime? It is certainly not but what it does is contribute to the Sexual Violence Pyramid. Unlike the Egyptian pyramids, we know how this pyramid was built.
The Sexual Violence Pyramid shows how behaviours, beliefs, and systems are built on and work in conjunction with one another. The top layers of the pyramid are horrible examples of violence and are recognized normally as violence by the majority of people. It is important to address the top layers but even more crucial to look at the bottom – the roots of the pyramid as if there are no roots there is no tree, isn’t it?
The structural systems at the bottom of the pyramid are roots of sexual violence, they feed and stabilize violence and unfortunately often are not taken seriously. “Oh, it is just a joke, what I can’t joke now?”, “Boys will be boys” etc.
It is possible to shift our normalized behaviours and deconstruct stereotypes only if each of us stops perceiving “a stupid sexist joke” as a silly thing and be aware that often seemingly harmless acts such as cat-calling or jokes may go unnoticed in society while resulting in much grimmer crimes.
Did you know that 63.1% of people of transgender and non-binary people feel unsafe while leaving the club alone at night?
According to our research, more than 60% of transgender, non-binary and other gender diverse people refer they feel insecure in different situations when going out at night. 54,7% of them say they experienced “sexist jokes with sexualized content”, 48,3% “unwanted sexual comments”, 38% “continuous invasion of their personal space”. They identified cismen as the main responsible for their unsafety perceptions and sexualized harassment and violence they experienced.
Transphobia, lesbophobia, homophobia, biphobia and other forms of discrimination towards gender and sexually diverse people have strong impacts on their wellbeing, living conditions, safety, access to rights and participation in social places. All people have the right to be who they are and to freely express themselves without fear and discrimination. Nightlife must be a safer place for all!
If you see a transgender, non-binary or gender diverse person being discriminated against and harassed don´t close your eyes. It is completely okay not to feel like a superhero each time (or any time at all). Being an active bystander doesn’t mean you always should get into a fight or personally confront a perpetrator or that you should put yourself at risk. Instead of confronting the perpetrators you can invite the person to join you and leave the place more safely, or call for help. Stand up against discrimination and take care of each other!
Did you know that 74.8% of women are afraid to experience sexualised aggression in the nightlife settings?
The opportunity to flirt and have sexual encounters is one of the charms of nightlife! However, independently of how horny we are and how much we want to have sex on that night, the interest and excitement must be mutual and the interaction should be egalitarian and respectful. At this point, let’s be clear: a person who is not feeling well is a person who needs help and care! By no chance, a heavily intoxicated, passed out or unconscious person it’s an opportunity for sex. People, and particularly women, are not sex toys!
Nightlife cultures emerged as free spaces to be and express ourselves, to bound and care for each other. This is something very special and we all can join the chain of creating special and fun places for all. If someone is being a target of sexualized harassment and violence it’s not her problem. It is your and our problem. Open your eyes, search for help and choose to act!
2. Sweaty as hell after dancing for hours, you are having a cigarette with your longtime friend. A woman sits next to him and fires a pipe. Suddenly he asks her “why is such a beauty here alone?”. She ignores him but your friend keeps insisting.