In 2017, UN Women in Indonesia conducted a safety audit in Jakarta which revealed that women are susceptible to harassment in public spaces, and the risk of these encounters tends to increase during evening hours. Last year, UN Women in collaboration with Pulse Lab Jakarta created a report to understand the mobility patterns and safety perception of women who travel at night called After Dark: Encouraging Safe Transit for Women Travelling at Night.
Inspired by the report and in order to celebrate International Women’s Day this month, Gojek Indonesia has launched specific initiatives in order to enhance the safety of female consumers.
“In total, 60% of Gojek’s transport customers are female, so we can’t take their safety lightly. We need to take care of and empower them to ensure that women use the Gojek platform because they trust our security standards,” Monita Moerdani, Gojek’s SVP transport marketing told KrASIA in a recent interview.
The new initiative is a follow-up to its previous campaign called #AmanBersamaGojek (safe with Gojek) that was launched in February.
According to the UN report, one of the factors that make traveling at night dangerous for women in urban areas is the lack of quality infrastructures such as insufficient lighting in the places where they wait for public transport, the absence of security posts, and hazardous walkways.
“Based on our data, 55% of passengers who order GoRide and GoCar at night are women so you can imagine the importance of female safety and we feel that we are responsible for translating that insight [from UN Women’s report] into real actions and we are the first on-demand tech company that’s doing so,” Moerdani continued.
The initiatives have three pillars; technology, protection, and education. For the technological aspect, the firm has a system called Gojek Shield to prevent and crack down on any suspicious behavior that occurs on its platform. The system has several features such as phone number masking, chat intervention, and an emergency button that is connected to Gojek’s emergency unit which is on standby 24/7 to provide assistance in the event of an emergency.
As part of its protection pillar, Gojek’s customer care unit is well-trained and experienced in handling difficult cases such as sexual harassment and acts of violence, and the unit provides a wide range of assistance features including legal and counseling aids to help victims recover from unwanted incidents, according to Moerdani.
“We believe that one incident is a case of too many, so we don’t tolerate any kind of harassment. We focus on prevention so we have all of these programs in place so we can prevent the incidents rather than fix them.”
Meanwhile, for its education pillar, Gojek aims to raise public awareness about harassment through a new initiative called “Gojek Safe Zone”, which comprises female-friendly public spaces that utilize hundreds of shelters or pickup points in various locations across the country.
“One of the most important components in ensuring women’s safety is by improving infrastructure. Therefore, we’ve been upgrading some of our shelters in major transit hubs to follow standards that are recommended by the UN report. For example, we make sure that the shelter is well-lit so women who are waiting for their transportation will feel secure even at night. We provide a proper seating area, and we have also placed educational posters and infographics so everyone can read and understand the types of harassment and how to help when you witness an incident,” said Moerdani.
In addition, Gojek collaborates with various institutions including the ministry of women empowerment and child protection (KPPA) and a non-governmental organization called Hollaback! Jakarta that aims to end harassment by providing Gojek’s driver partners with offline training so they can be active bystanders to fight violence in the public sphere. “The training has been initiated since last year and we managed to reach 400 drivers in eight major cities so far. This year, we hope to reach more cities and we’ll also create e-training on our platform so millions of drivers in our ecosystem will get access to the training,” she continued.
Through these initiatives, Gojek aims to foster a “culture of support” in Indonesian society, which extends beyond Gojek’s ecosystem. The company wants to empower driver partners and give them the right knowledge so they know what to do when witnessing cases. This program is an ongoing effort that will always be improved on over time in order to create a safe and comfortable public space for women, Moerdani concluded.