22.5% of women have reportedly been sexually harassed at Lebanese universities, and as with all statistics in Lebanon the numbers only reflect the tip of the iceberg. Taboo holds back many girls from reporting on such a sensitive issue, fearing negative setbacks and isolation…Not anymore!
Alaa Chehayeb, an independent journalist and writer for Wamda , took the initiative as part of a competition and training course with the ICFJ (International Center For Journalists). He chose this topic due to the lack of available data on the issue, citing increasing recurrences of sexual harassment cases at universities as the main reason. By initiating an online survey, he then analyzed and created visualized data, gaining the trust of several victims to build a platform from scratch. This system can be used by girls to report harassment cases on their own, in hopes of creating a support network, raising awareness on the topic, and battling this issue.
According to the numbers gathered through this survey, the Lebanese University 1st Branch topped the list with 27.5% of girls reporting sexual harassment. The American University of Beirut came in second with 17.5%, and the Lebanese University 4rth Branch, third with 7.5%. Five other universities made the list with staggering numbers including Notre Dame University, Universite Antonine, Lebanese International University, and Beirut Arab University.
Let’s stand by women in a country that shows no regards to tangible rights, lest a network of this sort yield change starting with universities, followed by the workplace and setting homes straight.
For more information please check the U-Haras website on: http://www.u-harass.org/