Government seeks to outlaw cat-calling women on the street


Cat-calling women in pubs or on the street could become a crime in planned crackdown on violence against females

  • The Law Commission is considering the criminalisation of cat-calling 
  • It will stop short of making misogyny a hate crime as it would be ineffective 
  • Priti Patel said flashing and physical or verbal abuse were not low level crimes 










Harassing women in pubs or on the street could be outlawed in a planned crackdown on violence against women.

The Law Commission is set to call for the criminalisation of public sexual harassment such as cat-calling and making lewd comments, it was reported last night.

It will also recommend making ‘inciting hatred against women’ a criminal offence, in a Government-commissioned review of hate crimes.

But it will stop short of making misogyny a hate crime as it was said to be ineffective and potentially counter-productive in terms of protecting women and sentencing offenders.

The Government is planning on outlawing sexually harassing women on the street

The Government is planning on outlawing sexually harassing women on the street

Home Secretary Priti Patel, pictured, believes such behaviour can escalate

Home Secretary Priti Patel, pictured, believes such behaviour can escalate 

Feminist campaigner Nimco Ali, who is advising the Government on violence against women, said that the new legislation was like ‘seatbelt laws’ and was essential to change ‘social norms’

Feminist campaigner Nimco Ali, who is advising the Government on violence against women, said that the new legislation was like ‘seatbelt laws’ and was essential to change ‘social norms’

A Whitehall source told The Daily Telegraph: ‘[The commission] will call for a public sexual harassment offence, which doesn’t currently exist. It thinks this fits with other work the Government is doing on criminalising intimate image abuse and will be more productive and better in protecting women.’

Following the murder of Sarah Everard in March, Home Secretary Priti Patel said crimes such as flashing, verbal or physical abuse of women in the street were not ‘low-level’ and could lead to more serious offences.

Feminist campaigner Nimco Ali, who is advising the Government on violence against women, said that the new legislation was like ‘seatbelt laws’ and was essential to change ‘social norms’.

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Written by Bourbiza Mohamed

I have 26 years of experience as a professional writer and editor and have been working as a full time freelancer since 2011. I am originally from Casablanca, Morocco, and I graduated from Qatar University with a degree in journalism. I have worked for newspapers, magazines, news agencies, websites. I speak fluent Arabic, French, English, Russian and Spanish.

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