(NEW YORK) — The streets of New York and Philadelphia have been getting new street signs that look just like “No Parking” signs, but they’re sending a different message.
If you’re keeping your eyes peeled, you’ll notice the new signs say things like: “NO CATCALLING ANYTIME” and “NO CATCALL ZONE.”
The “public street art” is being “sneakily” put up to raise awareness for International Anti-Street Harassment Week this week, says non-profit clothing company “Feminist Apparel.” The group added it started the project in collaboration with Philadelphia-based feminist group “Pussy Division.”
There are over 50 signs up already, and the campaign plans on planting a few more — at least one in each borough of New York City, Feminist Apparel told ABC News Thursday in a statement.
“Awareness-building and dialogue-creation surrounding feminist issues is at the core of our nonprofit’s mission,” the non-profit said, “and we just thought legitimate looking anti-catcalling street signs out on the streets where street harassment occurs would be a cool, visual way to capture people’s attention towards the issue.”
The group is also “looking into” expanding the project to other major cities after getting “a lot of requests,” Feminist Apparel’s production coordinator Alan Martofel told ABC News.
Non-contact unwanted sexual experiences, including street harassment, “are the most prevalent form of sexual violence for both men and women in the United States,” according to anti-street harassment group “Hollaback!” which cited a Center for disease Control and Prevention (CDC) survey.
Hollaback! Deputy Director Debjani Roy told ABC News station WABC-TV the “NO CATCALLING” signs carry an important message.
“Street harassment is something that has been normalized over time, and when we talk about street harassment we’re talking about verbal harassment and catcalling, but also non-verbal gestures,” Roy said. “The signs are a very interesting way to approach the subject, public art is really important in raising awareness.”
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