Enschede bans sexual harassment on public streets
The city of Enschede in Overijssel is the latest city looking to tackle sexual intimidation on the streets by banning cat-calling and wolf-whistling. A proposal by VVD councilor Malkis Jajan to criminalize sexual harassment was adopted by a majority of the city council on Monday evening, RTV Oost reported.
"With this ban, we will not immediately solve the problems, but we are sending a strong signal," said Jajan.
Enschede has been struggling with sexual harassment in public spaces for some time now, the broadcaster said. Last summer, the city council voted unanimously for a more robust approach to combating it.
The effectiveness of the new proposal was questioned by Enschede Mayor Onno van Veldhuizen. "It's a very big effort that will yield little. Every little bit helps, but it's not more than that either," said Van Veldhuizen.
The municipal council of Enschede will now work on implementing the ban on sexual harassment by first including it in the General Local Local Regulation (APV). By placing the ban under existing regulations, a situation similar to that in Rotterdam should be prevented.
Alkmaar is the only city in the Netherlands where such a ban is currently in force, RTV Oost said.