Your Ground is taking a stand against gendered violence.
Launching today, Wednesday April 28, it’s a new interactive map inviting female-identifying and gender-diverse Victorians to share their experiences in public spaces – including streets, parks, trails and recreational areas – across the state.
It’s a result of an all-Victorian collaboration between Monash University’s XYX Lab, a team of researchers focused on gender-sensitive design practices; digital consultant Crowd Spot; and 18 local councils.
“The ability to move freely in and around the places you live, work and play – and to feel you belong in your space and place – is an essential human right,” co-director of XYX Lab doctor Nicole Kalms said in a statement. “Yet, often this is denied to many on the basis of gender.”
Open to female-identifying and gender-diverse people over the age of 18 for a period of approximately three months, Your Ground lets users drop a pin and anonymously share an experience they’ve had – be it safe or unsafe – while commuting, socialising or exercising in metro or regional Victoria.
There’s no limit to how many observations can be shared. And they can pertain to anything from the adequacy or inadequacy of a particular area’s lighting, to how busy or deserted it is, to whether or not a gender-neutral or all-gender bathroom is available.
Kalms continues: “As a grassroots crowdsourcing tool, Your Ground will uncover the experiences that restrict access to exercise and freedom of movement and provide important insights to those tasked with making key decisions.”
That includes the partner councils; Victoria’s Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning; and violence-prevention organisation Respect Victoria. All of which will receive a detailed report at the end of the information-gathering process.