Kate Greenspan is a 25-year-old woman who had never felt unsafe walking alone at night in NYC. One Tuesday night, she was walking home alone after finishing dinner with friends in the Upper West Side when she noticed a man walking toward her, but thought nothing of it. Before she could even react, the man punched her in the face and left her lying on the ground. Alone and afraid, she called 911 and was taken to the hospital to check her jaw.
“It took me two months before I felt comfortable enough walk alone in the neighborhood again,” Kate said.
Kate’s story is one that many women out there have experienced when they least expected it. While most areas in New York have remained relatively safe in the past years, it’s still important for women take precautionary steps while walking alone at night.
That being said, here are some safety tips for women walking alone (especially at night) in New York City:
Have an emergency support network
Getting help from a professional support team is now as easy as a pressing a button with Ripple Network Technologies Inc’s first-of-its-kind wearable device. The device and phone app allow you to discreetly signal their professional monitoring team 24/7 with a single click to immediately receive a call on your smartphone.
If you need emergency help but don’t feel comfortable asking for it over a phone call, you can click it three times and the monitoring team will send police or an ambulance straight to your location. The device can be worn hidden on your pants pocket, or as a bracelet around your wrist so it is easily accessible when needed.
Keep your belongings close
Make sure to always keep your bag close to you, tucked into your elbow and zipped up. It’s easy to snatch purses and bags when they’re hanging off of one shoulder, so make sure to wear them across your body. If you’re mugged for your purse, just give it up. There is nothing inside it that is worth more than your safety.
Avoid dark areas
Stay clear of dark alleyways, corners and streets. Find the main streets and avenues that are lit up by streetlights, restaurants, and stores. Make sure to walk close to the doors so people inside can see you.
Make sure to constantly check your surroundings while you are walking so you are aware of the people around you. Walk decisively and like you know where you’re going even if you don’t. Try to not to text while your walking and refrain from wearing your headphones on so you can sense danger before it happens.