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WHYS in Takoradi: Why are women still sexually harassed?

Nuala McGovern Nuala McGovern | 09:22 UK time, Tuesday, 8 March 2011

This topic was discussed on World Have Your Say on 8 March 2011. Listen to the programme.
It's the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day. We are in Takoradi, Ghana and doing a live broadcast today with an audience. We want to discuss why, after 100 years of social, political and economic progress; women are still cat-called, shouted at, groped and mauled on a daily basis all around the world. I asked you on Facebook what you thought and so many of you got in touch with your stories and your theories.
Lisa in Ohio posted:
This seemed to happen to me occasionally when I lived in Japan. Once I was bicycling down the street to the convenience store, and a man on a mini-bike pulled up beside me and grabbed my breast. He was gone before I had a chance to react.
Abdul in Ghana posts who he sees as the culprit:
I blame women for what's happening to them. They often see themselves as sexual objects.

People don't agree what constitutes sexual harassment. What one woman thinks is harassment, another may think is harmless fun. And what about the guys? How do they manage to walk the line between sexual flirtation and sexual pestering? Is an unwanted compliment, harassment? What about three times from the same person, is that okay?

How do you see groping and mauling? Where does that come on the scale? And, there is sexual assault and rape, are these the only incidents you would call harassment? Or maybe it's all of the above?

There's been a lot of discussion about schools, colleges and the workplace. What about the conversations that take place there? Are sexual jokes harassment?

And why do all these things happen? Some blame women for dressing provocatively, others say it's men trying to regain power as society becomes more equal between the sexes. And there are those that think it's Western influences in society - with more men and women working together it's bound to bring up these issues.

So should it be legislated? Or can an individual take care of it?

Have you ever slapped someone for unwanted sexual advances? Full disclosure, I have used a heavy dictionary in the direction of someone who was giving me some unwanted attention on a packed tram in Milan.

We've all got stories and opinions, let's share them.

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