Tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Hanna Rodrigues. I'm the owner of the Catcalls of Kamloops account.
When did you start your account?
I started the account in October of 2019
Why were you inspired to start an account?
After seeing the Cat Calls of NYC account I felt almost obligated to start one for my city. I had always advocated for women's rights and against rape and harassment and I saw this as another BIGGER opportunity to raise awareness.
Why do you think “chalking back” is a good method to raise awareness?
Chalking the quotes allows people on their everyday to stroll to see what happened to someone else. It's not permanent and therefor not illegal and done of public sidewalks and parks.
Why do you think ending street harassment is important?
Without street harassment I wouldn't have to walk places with one headphone out, or my keys clutched tightly in my pocket. I could smile and strangers and they would smile back without it being predatory. All in all I could feel SAFE. I could feel like my gender and size doesn't define how easily someone could take me down if they wanted.
What’s your favorite thing about your city?
Kamloops has a great appreciation for their pride month and the pride parade. It also has some amazing views from up high.
How can your city better address street harassment?
The scariest harassment I've faced was while I was on the public transit. People came on clearly intoxicated and asked me my name. When i didn't reply he shouted back " answer me when I'm talking to you." I was shocked and scared when the bus driver didn't kick those people off. It made me feel extremely unsafe because there was no where I could escape to. i got off at the closest stop and had to call my step mom to come pick me up even though she was working. We need bus drivers who are going to take action against people who clearly are causing a disturbance and making people feel unsafe.
What do you hope is the outcome of your account?
I want people to see the chalkings and carry with them that this happens to people for no reason. Cat calling is never warranted by what someone is wearing or acting.
What’s the most difficult street harassment situation you’ve experienced?
My first cat calls was the scariest because I had no idea how to act. I was walking past a bus stop right outside my home. I was wearing a sweater and a cute black skirt that (not that it should matter) came no higher than my knees. I was walking past minding my own business and one of the men called out and said "that skirt would look better on my bedroom floor". I haven't worn that skirt outside since.
What does being a part of this campaign mean to you? It's amazing to be part of such a widely spread group bringing awareness to this very relevant topic that no one seems to talk about. Knowing that people have the same experiences makes me feel better and not so alone and I know it does for other people as well.