Women in Singapore are saying #MeToo

“Me too. More than 10 times, in broad daylight, at night, strobe light; alone, in the company of friends, strangers; in cities, college towns, deserted islands untouched by running water but not by misogyny; within eyeshot, earshot, the crosshairs of CCTV,” wrote Amanda Chong, lawyer and poet, on Facebook.

Chong is one of many women in Singapore posting their stories of sexual harassment and assault on social media, along with women in the United States and around the world.

This online movement began on Monday (16 October) when actress Alyssa Milano called upon Twitter users to post “Me too” if they have had an experience with sexual assault and harassment.

Milano’s tweet followed a number of women coming forward with sexual harassment and assault allegations against Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein. Her tweet has been retweeted 25,000 times since.

The #MeToo movement was originally created by activist Tarana Burke in 2007. Burke recently told Ebony Magazine that she created the campaign as a grassroots movement to reach sexual assault survivors in underprivileged communities.

Women in Singapore from all walks of life responded to the tweet by sharing their stories.

However, at least one woman questioned the emphasis on the victims to speak up rather than the perpetrators.

The strong response to the campaign in Singapore suggests that sexual assault and harassment is a common occurrence here.

Some men also responded online, sharing their disgust and concern, tweeting #iwill, a response to the #metoo hashtag, in which people name a specific action they are committing to in order to combat sexual harassment and assault.

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