The world is a very different place now than it used to be. Of course ever since we are children we are taught do not talk to strangers. Do not get into a strangers car. Do not go out alone. However, with the rise in Uber we are constantly getting into a strangers car. When we take a cab we are getting into a strangers car.
I don’t know the exact statistics but the amount of women that our sexually assaulted on a daily basis is probably astounding. Now is it true that in a lot of cases it is someone you know that does it. Yes but it’s also true that in a lot of cases it is someone that you do not know. I also don’t want to say men don’t get assaulted either because young men get sexually assaulted as well.
As a young woman who has now been living on my own for almost a year I have learned to be much more aware of my surroundings. If I go to meet a friend for a drink I make sure that I have one or two and stop. If I know that I’m going to be taking public transportation home I make sure I am alert and aware. I live near a big city and I like to go into Boston to walk around and go to the park and catch up on some reading.
With that being said cities have their dangers especially to women alone. Is it comforting that on almost every corner there is a Boston police care just sitting there. Sure. But is that really enough to ensure that you feel absolutely safe? Of course not. While I am brave enough to venture alone into the city many women are not. I’ve only had one instance in the past almost 10 months that caused me to be concerned and nothing thank goodness happened to me because I was at a place that I have a relationship built at.
That leads me into this little helpful information. There is an app that was created by students at the University of Missouri. It is an app for everyone enough though it is strongly marketed towards women. The app uses your exact gps coordinates from your phone. Basically you hold your finger on a button on your screen while you are in the cab, out on the walk, in an uber and when you reach your destination release. Once you remove your finger you have 10 seconds to enter your PIN number or it will send an alert to authorities.
This app can be so useful for so many people in so many situations. You can use it as a panic button if you fall in your home and need medical assistance. If someone is trying to break in your home tap and release and it will send people to you. Because honestly most of us in those situations are too scared to speak or call police thinking the person will hurt us. I can’t recommend it enough.
Now some will say well if people and specifically young women did not go out alone we would not need an app like this. To them I say back I have the right to want to leave my home by myself and feel safe in doing so. I have the right to not let fear control my life when it comes to living it. Women should not have to live in fear that they will be assaulted no matter where they go.
In the end though the most important thing I can say is if you go out alone be alert and be aware. Do not go out alone and get intoxicated. Be smart.