Participation of women in the public arena through women’s safety audits
Leadership and decision making
People of Bastia in Corsica analyze results from the exploratory walk and identify solutions for improvement.
Preparation of the restitution and recommendations with city officials.
In vulnerable neighborhoods in France, almost a third of women report feeling unsafe. This fear can lead them to avoid or desert public places and restrict their activities and social lives.
In response to this situation, women’s safety audits were developed in Canada as early as the 1990s. This approach relies on the mobilization and expertise of inhabitants to improve their environment. France Mediation is the pioneer organization for the implementation of this method in France.
Fondation CHANEL has worked with the France Mediation network to coordinate a national experiment: the development of women’s safety audits in 12 French cities. This innovative project seeks to reinforce the role of women in local participatory democracy by enabling them to collectively inform public authorities of their expectations regarding access to public spaces.
Several safety audits with groups of women walking together around their neighborhood were organized as different times during the day. They conclude with a presentation to local elected representatives and partners on the problems encountered and ways to improve local safety conditions.
- The assessment confirms the relevance of safety audits as a lever for improving the social participation of women.
- Safety audits help to reinforce women’s self-confidence and re-establish social ties through the creation of female led-groups who take action on behalf of their communities.
- 120 women have taken part in 40 walks to conduct safety audits
- 50 people were trained in the methodology of women’s safety audits (social mediators, organization town or state representatives).
The France Mediation Network intends to promote the development and recognition of social mediation throughout the national territory, by the capitalization of exchange of knowledge and practices among its members.