Beijing: The Chinese police and public transport authorities have published a guideline to prevent the sexual harassment of passengers on buses and subways.
Experts, however, doubt it will solve the problem at its root.
The guideline, published by the traffic department under the Beijing Public Security Bureau, says women should not wear minimal clothing, such as miniskirts or hot pants when taking public transportation and should call police promptly if they are sexually harassed, reports China Daily.
Women are advised to not sit on higher levels of buses and to stand on lower stairs, to avoid being the target of inappropriate picture-taking, and they should protect their bodies with bags, magazines and newspapers.
In the case of sexual harassment, women can move to areas with more passengers to ask for help, or they can push men as buses and subways brake, the guideline added.
Xing Wei, a police officer with the department, said it is hard for them to collect evidence in sexual harassment cases despite cameras on buses and subways. It is also difficult to train public transportation workers to assist women in harassment prevention and response, he added.
Now, police will warn, fine and detain perpetrators of sexual harassment in accordance with a security control regulation in place, he said, adding the heaviest punishment is a 15-day detention.
Wang Jiansheng, the director of the security department with Fourth Transport Company under Beijing Public Transport Holdings Ltd, said the best safety method is to ask conductors to remind women to protect themselves, rather than publish notices or establish a rule.
However, Jiang Yue, a law professor at Xiamen University and an expert in women`s rights, refuted the company`s opinion and said the advisory from police will not solve the problem at its root.
Jiang suggested a law to prevent sexual harassment, adding harassment affects men as well as women.