Feminist Creates Petition to Stop 'Constant Sexual Street Harassment' in Austin

ashley.rae | August 6, 2015
Font Size

Because Anna Aldridge allegedly can no longer leave her home without fearing “the constant sexual street harassment” she encounters on the streets of Austin, she has created a petition asking the Austin City Council to “stop sexual harassment in Austin.”

In her petition, Aldridge wrote about the continuous sexual street harassment, also known as catcalling, she claims to experience:

“I am an avid runner in Austin, Texas and no longer feel that I can safely leave my home, even in broad daylight because of the constant sexual street harassment I encounter. As an active member of the running community, I know that my experience is not isolated. I am asking for your support in making sexual street harassment a crime in Austin through legislation drafted by the Austin City Council.”

“As a homeowner, business owner, and taxpayer in the City of Austin, I refuse to accept this behavior any longer. My tax dollars pay to maintain the streets in this city and I deserve to use them without being sexually objectified or reduced to my biology. I deserve to be protected by the police force when I feel that I am in danger of sexual assault,” Aldridge wrote.

“In 2015 when the confederate flag in down and same-sex marriage is legal nation-wide, it is asinine that a progressive city like Austin, Texas still allows women to be treated like objects of sexual entertainment in their own communities,” she continued.

In order to stop street harassment, Aldridge proposes a few “reasonable” policy suggestions for the Austin City Council.

Her proposals include making street harassment an offense worthy of a ticket, a fine, or even arrest for individuals who have a history of sexual abuse or assault. Aldridge states that business owners whose employees are caught catcalling should be subjected to a fine and “forced” to endure a “mandated” sexual harassment training course provided by the city. She also issues the blanket statement that “Austin City Police Officers need to be more educated on the subject of sexual harassment and sexual assault.”

While the petition has only accumulated a meager 283 signatures since it began a week ago, the petition has caught the attention of a few local news outlets.

Speaking to KVUE, Aldridge explained the daily horror she endures at the hands of men on the street.

"It's usually just like 'Woo hoo!' or 'Hey, baby!' It's disgusting. It's horrible,” she said. “I've had guys roll down the window and make these little kissy faces at me.”

KVUE brought cameras on a run with Aldridge and only observed a few honks.