Recently Pakistan has broken the stigmas and taken a step forward in the sphere of societal evils- especially sexual harassment. With the power social media enjoy in the present day, victims of harassment have started speaking because they have a feeling of security. Security – that extends from having a larger audience of people who will actually believe them to the security their own families fail to provide them.
For years the victims, rather than being provided with an atmosphere of acceptability and support to narrate their ordeals, have been silenced, making them feel as if they are the culprits. However, the real culprits have hidden behind these stigmas and self-proclaimed ‘honor’ – which always proved to be safe havens for this malevolence.
However, there is a commendable change in the perception of the people in accepting and respecting the victims’ plights – and we owe a lot to social media. While there is a number of platforms working on the issue and breaking barriers, ‘Stop Harassment Now’ is dedicatedly and passionately working for the cause.
The pioneer of the concept Usman Awan says that we need to throw away the labels and openly start addressing the issue. He says that we are always interested in listening to the stories but aren’t ready to asses them.
“People take interest in sexual harassment stories but they don’t try to analyze this issue at root level’’ – he said.
With providing the victims a platform to raise discussions and talk about the issue, Usman has also taken lawyers and mental health experts on the team. With issues ranging from cyberbullying to harassment incidents, the team at Stop Harassment Now is providing absolutely free legal assistance to the victims and hires lawyers on behalf of them to assure the maximum comfort and security.
As many as 20 cases have been solved through proper legal assistance while maintaining the confidentiality. Becoming a safe discussion forum for over 10,000 members, Stop Harassment Now has combined working women, housewives, victims of harassment, rape survivors, lawyers and acid attack survivors under one banner and have provided them with a chance to inspire each other through this.
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If you know anyone who is silently struggling and is finding trouble gathering courage speaking up about it, help them connect to the amazing team here and do your part in defeating this evil.
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