Rail, Tram, and Bus Union (RTBU) National Secretary Bob Nanva has proposed a trial of pink train carriages to make travel experience safe at night exclusively for the female population of Australia.
The idea, however, has invited numerous reactions both from commuters as well as feminists. According to some people, it is unfair to men who have no such bad intentions towards women. The proposal of safe carriages in New South Wales might prompt the installation of extra distress buttons along with regular checks by transport industry employees. There will be an onboard CCTV camera to keep a constant watch on the train as well.
The train will start running after 8:00 p.m. at night. “Since September 2012, there have been 2859 criminal offences against women on public transport, including almost 19 sexual offences against women on NSW bus, tram and train networks every month,” Nanva told news.com.au. “A survey of NSW commuters a few years ago found that 64 per cent of women felt unsafe on public transport after dark. But this is not just a NSW problem — commuters across the country have told us that something must be done.”
To the pink train carriages for women proposal, feminist Eva Cox advocated for having special carriages for men instead. “I suspect if men are being drunk and obnoxious they ought to be stuck away in a separate carriage rather than limit women to the special carriage,” she said as quoted by The Daily Telegraph. “I think we should lock up the potential perpetrators. Or keep them away from the women rather than the other way around.”
2GB radio presenter Ben Fordham also rejected the proposal of the construction of pink carriages, especially for women. According to him, such a move by authorities might make people suspect the activities being conducted in other parts of the train.
Some commentators said that it was like victim-blaming as the creation of women-only train carriages was being thought of. Instead, the authorities should think of making a separate carriage for men.