Our initial goal at GrooveSafe is to be present in the live music scene across all genres. This movement brings awareness to sexual assault and teaches that a change in behavior starts with a recognition of the problem. GrooveSafe strives to rebuild a concert-going culture with an emphasis on consent.
We do this by creating safer dance spaces, educating fans on appropriate interactions, and currently highlight the importance of respect for personal boundaries post-pandemic. We strive to keep the conversation going and give everyone a voice and the power of choice.
Our long term goals include educating people on how to respond to assault, how to take action as an active bystander, and tips on staying safe. GrooveSafe wants to offer support and resources to survivors as well as venues.
We want our logo to represent a silent message of a safe space- standing against the unwanted touching and sexual assault against any gender, by any gender, at any live music event.
Creating messages from artists and GrooveSafe zones at venues will help us with our goals.
Self expression is not an invitation to cross the touch barrier. Consent is mandatory - help us spread the word.
GrooveSafe is a movement within the musical community to bring awareness about unwanted touching and sexual assault at concerts. #GrooveSafe #ALLGENDERSALLGENRES
Yes, it happens and it’s terrible. For years, going to concerts was my happy place. There was just one element of the environment that was always uncomfortable. From time to time, I would get groped or grinded on. I spent many shows wondering why people thought it was okay to touch other people without permission. It ruined entire nights when I was so put off, so violated, that I had to excuse myself from the show.
I figured if this was happening to me so much, it had to be happening to others.
I began to talk about it, mostly with friends and in online groups. I knew I had to be brave and talk about this issue as much as I could.
In the fall of 2016, there was an incident at a Phish show in Las Vegas where a man’s girlfriend was groped and it created a loud online discussion, as it should have. This prompted me to extend the conversation outside of my trusted circles. With a background in Psychology, human behavior fascinated me but I was also sick of people hurting others.
I created a thread in a large internet Phish forum and the response was overwhelming. There was a variety of responses ranging from “I had NO idea this was happening” to “Thank you for addressing this, I didn’t realize I was assaulted until this conversation”.
I learned so much from that research and those testimonials, not only how frequently this was happening but it happens while sober, in every music scene and to people of all genders. I knew I needed to start a movement. Body safety is something that is taught in kindergarten and keeping your hands to yourself is expected to have been learned long ago. There are movements and campaigns that stress the importance of consent in many areas of our culture. Why should the music scene be any different?
We now partner with bands, venues, promoters and groups to spread our message.
The movement starts with awareness which will lead to changing behavior as well as protecting each other. Keep talking about this and look out for one another. This is a mission within the community, for the whole community, to better the community.
We look forward to putting an end to sexual assaults and unwanted touching at concerts.
Ashley Driscoll, Founder
Keeping online interactions positive and kind during the pandemic with some helpful hints.
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