Women and girl's safety

Visit our This Has To Stop campagin


Our goal 

Too many women and girls in Redbridge experience and are fearful of harassment or assault in our public spaces. This can range from unwanted sexual remarks and gestures to rape and murder. Public spaces include streets, in and around public transport, schools, workplaces, public toilets and in parks. This sad reality means that women and girls’ freedom of movement and ability to join in public life is negatively impacted.

Redbridge council understand this and knows that women cannot keep changing how they live in an attempt to keep themselves safe. It is the responsibility of everyone, especially men to improve the safety of women and girls. So, we are working closely with the police, our other partners such as local schools and businesses, as well as with the local community. Together, we are taking more action to improve women's and girls’ safety across the borough. We have a mission for Redbridge to be a safe place for women and girls. This in turn means a safer space for everyone. 



We know that it should not just be on women and girls to keep themselves safe from crime and harassment. 

in March 2023 Redbridge council launched ThisHasToStop

The campaign builds on the previous work of the independent Community Crime Commission, which reviewed crime across the borough and made recommendations for cutting crime and improving lives locally. Increasing the safety of women and girls was one of the Commission’s top priorities. The Council is determined to deliver on this objective and has launched a new manifesto for women and girls and new powers mean that on-street sexism is now an enforceable offence. Work is underway to create better street environments in areas where women have reported feeling unsafe.

 The campaign is informed by the experiences of local women and backed up by research into what works in preventing violent behaviours. It encompasses a wide-ranging programme of activities, which will be delivered across council departments and in partnership with schools, community groups and businesses.

Read more about This Has To Stop and download free resources on how to safely intervene as a bystander from our Don't stand by, Step in! page.

Find out more information on our findings from our engagement with women and girls in the community and what steps we are taking to improve safety across the borough.

Creating a Safer Redbridge for Women and Girls, our mission statement (1.66 KB)

  • Less than 1 in 5 (19%) women felt generally safe in Redbridge
  • 2 out of 3 (68%) women and girls experience street harassment at least once a month in Ilford and sadly only 3.4% have never experienced street harassment in Ilford (the Town Centre)
  • 1 out of 4 (26%) have also been touched in Ilford
  • The majority (84%) of respondents felt unsafe in Ilford Town Centre, this was followed closely by the Seven Kings (80%) and Goodmayes (74%) High Streets

The most common types of street harassment experienced by women and girls by males are:

  • 91% Catcalling (e.g. unwanted flirtatious comments)
  • 81% Sounds being made towards them (e.g. wolf-whistling)
  • 62% being followed by someone
  • 45% aggressive verbal harassment (being shouted at by someone)
  • 26% being touched

In an attempt to increase safety, women and girls who responded to the survey changed their behaviour.

  • 69% have changed the route they take
  • 67% avoid public transport at night
  • 64% avoid going out alone
  • 44% have changed the way they dress
  • 24% carry a rape alarm or other protective equipment

Enforcement partnership with the Police

We have agreed to joint regular patrols for Council Enforcement Officers and Policing Teams to use innovative Anti-Social Behaviour legislation that enables them to fine individuals who cause harassment to women on our streets. An example of this multi-agency work is where council enforcement officers, British Transport Police officers and the Police town centre team undertake an engagement and reassurance operation outside Ilford Train Station at both entrances. There is high visibility presence using our vehicles and the CCTV Challenger. The operations are proving to be a success and several women stop to talk to the officers.


There are over 700 CCTV cameras installed across the borough (including subways and underpass) that are live and operating in a control room which is staffed 24/7.

You can see where the cameras are located through our CCTV page.

The CCTV operators have begun patrols during the night and early hours of the morning for lone individuals particularly women to ensure they reach their destination safely. If an individual appears vulnerable, they will alert officers and deploy the CCTV Mobile Challenger on the ground to go to their location to offer support.

Work with young people

In partnership with Mayfield school, we did a month-long survey on pupil safety and delivered workshops across all year groups specifically on women's and girls’ safety.  This was followed by walks in small groups to allow pupils to tell us about how/when/where and why they feel unsafe on their journey to and around the school. As a response to one of their concerns, there are now regular police patrols and searches around the Frank Slater House area.

This piece of work was the subject of a BBC news article presenting the school as ‘ahead of the game’ in tackling harassment of women and girls. We have offered this to other schools but are exploring how we can expand this to all schools in the borough.

As part of the This Has To Stop campaign we have worked with parents and teachers to co-design materials for year 6, 7, 8, and 9 as part of our Transition Talkers and Step in projects. 

The Transition Talkers are for year 6's moving into year 7 and focus on developing safe and respectful behaviours. They invite families to consider a range of scenarios where children might need to decide how best to act. From recognising harassment to dealing with pressure from older children and accepting rejection.

Step In are 10 modules designed to be delivered in form times currently being piloted in year 9s. These include real life scenarios and visuals engaging on topics such as what is sexist harassment, what can be done and where to go if it happens to you or a friend, how to step in safely, peer pressure, and the impact of sexist behaviour on society. 

Police Walks and Talks

The police arrange regular walks around different parts of the borough for women and girls to come and speak to female police officers about their experiences, safety concerns and reflections.

Find upcoming dates on the MPS Redbridge Twitter page.

If there are no upcoming dates or you are not able to make any of the times and dates on offer, you can register to arrange a walk on the Police’s Eventbrite page and a female officer will be in touch.

If you would like to work with us to ensure a safer Redbridge for women and girls, please contact the Community Safety Partnership Team by emailing CSP@redbridge.gov.uk