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New initiative for women’s safety in music industry launched by UN Women

Glastonbury and ticket retailer Dice have given the project their backing

A new initiative focused on protecting women's safety in the music industry has been launched, with gender equality organisation UN Women UK and UK festival Strawberries & Creem at the helm.

Titled Safe Spaces Now, the project is calling on the music and events industries to commit to tackling harassment and creating safe spaces for women and marginalised groups.

It comes off the back of recent alarming statistics that more than 7 in 10 women have been sexually harassed in the UK, and over 40% of women under 40 have experienced sexual harassment at a live music event.

The initiative has launched with an open letter, calling on various figures from across the music industry to get on board with their aims. Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis has already given her backing to the letter, while there are also other prominent signees in Rudimental and ticket retailer Dice. 

Launching the project, Claire Barnett, Executive Director of UN Women UK, said: "As live events return following the COVID pandemic, women and marginalised people everywhere are not only thinking about staying safe from the virus – they want to be able to enjoy their right to music, arts and culture without constant fears of violence and harassment.

"We have a unique opportunity as we return from lockdown to reconsider the way we construct and use our public spaces to be safer for the long term."

Cambridge festival Strawberries & Creem is the first event to sign the pledge and commit to piloting a safe spaces scheme at its event next month.

Read the full open letter here.

The launch of the Safe Spaces Now pledge follows on from a recent poster campaign, Change The Lineup, which aimed to raise awareness of sexual harassment in clubs.