Sexual harrassment is a huge issue at music festivals, but not one that's necessarily talked about enough.
Not too long ago in our own backyard, a girl donning 'glitter boobs' was groped by a random festival attendee, to which she fiercely reacted back (most of social media praising her for sticking up for herself)... but not all people have the same courage in these situations.
According to research conducted by Durham University in the UK, a massive 30% of women say they have been sexually harassed at a festival, with another 10% saying they have been sexually assaulted. This is a major concern, espcially with as many as 7 out of 10 women feeling unsafe/worrying about "potential sexual advances" while attending festivals.
Of men attending, 5% say they have been sexually harrassed and 1% say they have been sexually assaulted. Although these numbers are smaller to that of females, they're still very concerning.
Here's the overall breakdown of all festival attendees general concerns:
- Theft – 64%
- Physical violence – 53%
- Sexual harassment – 65%
- Sexual assault – 66%
A spokeswoman from Safe Gigs for Women spoke on the issue, "These figures are shocking but not surprising as this is just more evidence that women fear for their safety at live music festivals. This fits anecdotally with what we hear every day … Hopefully organisers hear this and respond appropriately."
Remember to stay safe when attending festivals, no matter who you are.
If you or anyone you know has been affected by sexual assault, here are some people you can call:
Auckland Sexual Abuse HELP Foundation
Phone: 09 623 1700