Twitter Can’t Get Enough Of The Mayor Of London’s “Have A Word” Campaign

“It's so powerful to see a campaign targeted at men.”

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has unveiled a brand new campaign aimed at tackling gendered violence against women and girls. The #HaveAWord project asks men to confront their own behaviour and that of their friends. The two-minute video follows a young man as one of his friends begins to cat-call and harass a young woman waiting for a taxi. The video shows the young man, as well as his internal dialogue, debating whether he should have a word with his friend.

Finally, the young man says “enough” and challenges his friend’s behaviour towards the young woman. The message of the video is a clear reminder of the harm that cat-calling can inflict as the young woman makes it into her taxi in tears.

Speaking of the campaign in February, Khan told BBC News that "this is not just an issue with the minority of men who are violent, but also with those men who are sexist, who continue to behave inappropriately around women, who perpetuate a toxic form of masculinity or who just stand by silently when women feel threatened or are being threatened. Men must change."

The campaign video was also shown at halftime during Crystal Palace and Manchester City’s match at Selhurst Park. It will also be supported by billboards. Despite Prime Minister, Boris Johnson ruling out making misogyny a hate crime, gendered violence is a big issue. According to UN Women, almost one in three women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence from a partner or sexual violence from a non-partner, or both at least once in their life. This figure doesn’t include sexual harassment.

For many, this campaign one of the first times that they’ve seen advert about gendered violence that is directly targeting men to take responsibility for their behaviour.