Reaction: sexual harassment on public transport harms women's health and forces them to change their behaviour

Sexual harassment on public transport affects the health and well-being of women around the world, according to a study by the University of Valencia. These events cause them to change their behaviour - for example, they travel accompanied, avoid certain places and stations or certain times of the day - as explained by the research, which analyses almost 30 previous studies carried out on several continents. The authors, whose study is published in PLoS ONE, highlight the contrast between "high government awareness of the problem and the paucity of measures to improve women's safety on transport". In addition, they propose including women in transport decision-making.

28/02/2024 - 20:00 CET
Expert reactions

Ariagor Almanza - acoso transporte EN

Ariagor Manuel Almanza Avendaño

Researcher at the Faculty of Human Sciences of the Autonomous University of Baja California (Mexico)

Science Media Centre Spain

Sexual harassment in public transport is a global problem that increases the gender gap, limits women's urban mobility and impacts on their quality of life. The study by Useche et al. is a systematic review of a cross-cultural pattern of gender-based violence that manifests itself in multiple settings, at different levels of economic development. 

The study provides evidence of how, in everyday life, individual strategies are adopted in the face of a structural problem. It calls for the reformulation of public transport policies to include women in decision-making and to consider that there are different degrees of vulnerability in terms of access to alternatives for action to prevent sexual harassment. Finally, it should be recognised that the work has been carried out with a high degree of methodological rigour and promotes the reformulation of the quality criteria for systematic reviews.

The author has declared they have no conflicts of interest
Invasion of privacy or structural violence? Harassment against women in public transport environments: A systematic review
  • Research article
  • Peer reviewed
  • People
  • Systematic review
Publication date

Sergio A. Useche et al.

Study types:
  • Research article
  • Peer reviewed
  • People
  • Systematic review
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