Myriad different factors make the New York City subway a very gross place, chief among them the outsized possibility that—especially if you identify or present as a womansome skeevy stranger will eventually masturbate at you. Psychological implications aside, sexual harassment comes with a financial cost; a “pink tax” on transportation as women pay more for safer ways to get from point A to point B.

Pink taxes are the added fees tacked onto “for women” products: The way a razor costs more when marketed to women than it does when tailored to men, for example. Researchers at the NYU Rudin Center for transportation did not set out with the specific intention of examining the public transit pink tax in their new survey. Rather, as Sarah Kaufman—the Rudin Center’s associate director, an adjunct assistant professor in urban planning, and one of the survey’s authors—told Gothamist, they wanted to explore how the types of behaviors addressed by the #MeToo movement “play out on a day-to-day basis on public transportation.”

What they found, however, is that some New York women could be paying as much as $1,200 extra every year in order to move safely around the city.

Researchers successfully surveyed a total of 547 people, 52 percent of whom identified as women (by which the authors mean cis and trans women, as well as femmes). Of those respondents, 75 percent said they had experienced harassment and/or theft on public transportation, versus 47 percent of male participants. The majority (86 percent) of harassment incidents occurred within the subway system, and 54 percent of women respondents worried about harassment compared to 20 percent of men. Those safety concerns drove 42 percent of participants toward for-hire vehicles (Uber, Lyft) for late night travel, while 16 percent opted for taxis and 15 percent stuck with public transportation. Notably, over three quarters of people who used taxis and people who called cars identified as women.

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Survey shows Women paying ‘Pink Tax‘ by Claire Lampen

Nov 13th, 2018