We want to be able to walk the streets day and night without being afraid

When will women ever feel safe to walk anywhere alone?

Walking the Streets: A Cry for Freedom and Safety

In today’s world, the desire for freedom, autonomy, and independence remains central to discussions in contemporary society. However, when women seek these very liberties, they often find themselves confronted with an unsettling reality—fear. A quick search on search engines or a glance at online forums and news comments reveals that the freedom women envision is far from what they experience in their daily lives.

This deficiency in autonomy manifests in seemingly simple activities, like going for a solo stroll. But when did a leisurely evening walk turn into a nerve-racking experience? This article delves into the evolving fear of women when venturing out alone and how recent events have intensified these anxieties.

The Fear of Going Out Alone

Today, countless women harbor a fear of walking alone, especially after dark. Some opt to forego solitary outings altogether, while others seek the company of friends or partners, believing it diminishes the perceived threat. The unease of potential aggression, the haunting feeling of being followed, and the ever-quickening, breathless pace are real experiences for many.

Unfortunately, the reality is that, day and night, there are individuals who may look like men but commit inhumane acts. They stalk, chase, and sometimes, tragically, they reach their victims, resulting in not only female tragedies but human tragedies.

The Tragic Tale of Sarah Everard

day and night without being afraid

On March 3rd, 33-year-old Sarah Everard attempted to return home around 9:30 pm in the Clapham area, but she never made it. Kidnapped and killed, her body was discovered days later in a wooded area in Ashford, Kent. The perpetrator was identified as Wayne Couzen, a 48-year-old police officer.

Sarah Everard’s case represents another tragic chapter. Her death sent shockwaves across the United Kingdom and the world, reigniting the discourse on women’s safety and the erosion of their freedom due to the very real dangers they face in public spaces.

In London, women gathered in a procession on the anniversary of Sarah Everard’s death, raising their voices against the pervasive fear now ingrained in the female experience. They united in their determination to ensure no more women fall prey to danger on the streets, advocating for an end to harassment, assault, and violence.

A Self-Imposed Curfew

Before Couzen’s arrest, the police urged women to stay at home and avoid going out alone in the evenings. However, is this a viable solution? Should women be deprived of their freedom, independence, and autonomy in the name of safety?

Why must women bear the heaviest burden for someone else’s wrongdoing? Isn’t violence, in all its forms, and the sacrifices that countless women endure daily, sufficient? The police’s appeal highlights a deeply rooted issue in societal culture and education—men should be held accountable, and their violence should be met with consequences, rather than asking women to alter their lives.

Hundreds of women in London rallied to commemorate Sarah Everard and champion the rights of all women. Many others joined the cause virtually, sharing stories, making appeals, and calling upon the government and society to implement security measures.

Caitlin Moran, a journalist at The Times, shed light on a stark reality: “My day ‘out’ ends at sunset. If I haven’t gone out with the dog or for a run and it’s dark, I give up.” Women find themselves observing a self-imposed curfew, solely for their own safety.

The WannaBeSafe Italia Campaign

The issue of women’s safety has garnered attention in Europe. Recently, three young women initiated a petition on change.org, advocating for the criminalization of catcalling. For women, a simple walk can quickly become a perilous journey, marked by unwelcome comments, lewd gestures, whistles, harassment, and pursuit.

Out of this awareness, the WannaBeSafe Italia campaign was born, spearheaded by Linda Guerrini and two other young Italians. Within days, the petition garnered over 17,000 signatures, emphasizing the collective awareness of the challenges women face on the streets. However, recognizing a problem doesn’t automatically solve it.

This petition is directed towards Parliament, urging politicians to acknowledge the issue and transform the proposal into a law that criminalizes catcalling.

Rules for Street Survival

women fear going out alone

Discussing rules for survival on the streets is both disheartening and necessary while awaiting lasting change. The truth is that until the mindset of certain men and society as a whole shifts, women will continue to combat these “dangers” that predominantly affect the female demographic.

No one should prevent women from walking the streets at night or wearing whatever they please without fearing rude comments or worse, harassment. However, women can follow some advice to enhance their safety while they await societal change.

  • Stay Aware: Always stay alert and attentive to your surroundings.
  • Use Technology Wisely: Share your location with a trusted contact and keep your phone accessible.
  • Travel Smart: Stick to well-lit and populated areas, plan your route, and avoid shortcuts through isolated areas.
  • Learn Self-Defense: Consider self-defense classes to boost confidence and skills.
  • Stay Connected: Maintain communication with friends or family while out.
  • Key as a Weapon: Keep your house keys in hand for quick access and as a potential defensive tool.
  • Yell and Defend: If faced with danger, don’t hesitate to raise your voice and defend yourself.

These are small steps towards protecting oneself while society undergoes necessary transformations. We must continue to fight for change, for a world where women can walk the streets without fear, reclaiming their freedom and autonomy.


The fear of going out alone should not restrict anyone’s life. It is a shared responsibility to create a world where everyone, regardless of gender, can move freely without fear. While society evolves towards this goal, individuals must remain vigilant and proactive in safeguarding their own security. By adhering to these tips, women can empower themselves and work towards a safer future.


  1. Why do many women fear going out alone? Women fear going out alone due to concerns about potential aggression, violence, or harassment.
  2. How did Sarah Everard’s case impact women’s safety discussions? Sarah Everard’s tragic death sparked renewed conversations about women’s safety and their freedom to move without fear.
  3. What is the WannaBeSafe Italia campaign? The WannaBeSafe Italia campaign is a movement advocating for the criminalization of catcalling to enhance women’s safety on the streets.
  4. Why are rules for street survival necessary? Rules for street survival provide practical guidance for women to stay safe until broader societal changes take place.
  5. What is the ultimate goal regarding women’s safety? The ultimate goal is to create a world where women can walk the streets without fear, enjoying their freedom and autonomy while feeling safe and secure.