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London Fire Brigade talk about Public Sexual Harassment

12 May 2021

Everyone is encouraged to listen to London Fire Brigade firefighter, Georgina Mann, based at Twickenham fire station, share her expert knowledge and personal experiences about Public Sexual Harassment.

The 19-minute long Talk Richmond episode can be listened to online or by searching for 'Talk Richmond' on your podcast application and downloading the latest episode.

The conversation is in response to Sarah Everard’s death and the thousands of women across the UK who shared their stories on the precautions they take every day to protect themselves from male violence and harassment on the street.

Georgina uses her specialist knowledge to clearly explain exactly what Public Sexual Harassment is, the impact it has on women and girls lives and mental health, the importance of education, and what the Fire Brigade is doing to help create safe spaces. She also shares her personal experiences of being harassed.

In the episode, Georgina says:

"...the problem with public sexual harassment is we've always labelled it a women's issue. So, we've never actually gone to the route and said no, this is not a women's issue, this is coming from somewhere else. So, you know the responsibility needs to be shifted off women taking care of themselves and protecting themselves and needs to be placed back on where it's coming from: so, from perpetrators.

"Unfortunately, men do feel very attacked, but it's not actually about pointing the finger at boys and men, it’s actually about having a reality check and thinking we as a society have created this culture. And we need to stop trivializing it and normalizing this behaviour and do something about it."

Talking about what the Fire Brigade is doing, Georgina says: 

"We want people to know that the station is open at 24/7 365 days a year. If you are being followed, harassed, threatened, please come knock on the door this is a safe place, you will be listened to. Even if it's not on the street that you're being harassed, if it's a safety issue at home, if you are suffering domestic abuse, please and you don't know where else to go, please come to the fire station because we can help you."

The Council’s Leader, Cllr Gareth Roberts, has published a blog post outlining Richmond Council's commitment to ending harassment and violence against women and girls.

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Up to: May 2021

Updated: 12 May 2021