Exploring Women’s Experience of Gender-Based Violence and Other Threats to Safety on Public Transport in Bangladesh
Equal access to safe transport is increasingly conceptualised as a fundamental right for women, with demonstrated impact on health outcomes, social and economic mobility, and societal participation. This study analysed qualitative and quantitative data to examine travel patterns and experiences among 200 women (aged between 18-64 years) using paid transport for work or educational purposes in Bangladesh. Results showed that the women faced multiple threats to their safety, including gender-based violence, harassment and crime, and traffic and non-traffic injury and that the use of paid transport was associated with high levels of anxiety and fear. Despite these circumstances, the women were captive travellers, forced to make transport choices based on price, availability, and ease of travel rather than safety. Unable to choose safe transports, the women attempted to mitigate risks by changing their travel pattern and behaviour, and by restricted their travel frequency. These findings are discussed within the context of women’s rights and mobility justice.
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