‘Don’t touch me’: Swedish police offer anti-sexual assault wristband
“By wearing these wristbands, young women will be able to make a stand. No one should have to accept sexual molestation. So do not grope. And if you are groped, report it to the police,” Police Chief Dan Eliasson said, according to the press release.
He added that the main goal of the step is to “draw attention to the issue [of sexual assault], and urge those affected to report.”
“We’re hoping mainly that this will get boys to think twice. A lot of them don’t seem to realize that this is a crime,” Eliasson told news agency TT.
He also described types of attacks that “many young people recognize too well.” This could include “a hand tucked between the legs”, “a hug from behind in the crush at a club or festival”, and “one person holding somebody while another grabs their breasts.”
Last month, a Swedish police report said that the country has the worst rates of sexual violence against women in entire Europe, according to a survey carried out by the EU’s rights agency.
“Sweden tops the new EU Statistics on physical and sexual violence against women, sexual harassment and stalking. The conclusion is that the results are a consequence of Nordic alcohol culture, but also of non-traditional gender roles,” the report said.
In most of the crimes, men were unable to “handle the alcohol,” simply felt “horny,” having “ignorance of the consequences for the girls" or “misplaced feelings,”“expressing anger in this way” or acting due to “peer pressure.”
Recent migrants are blamed for some of the crimes: migrant sex gangs were attacking girls from 12 to 17 years old over the past two summers at the Stockholm music festival. In a leaked police memo, security forces noted that “unaccompanied youth” from the Middle East were behind the crimes, Breitbart reported.
More attacks were reported at Swedish music festivals Arvika in 2006 and 2010, Emmaboda in 2014 and Bråvalla in 2015, with police accused of covering up the assaults and not disclosing details on the 36 reports of sexual assault and two rape allegations filed after the festivals in 2014 and 2015, the Local reported.