Nillumbik Shire Council joined with Monash University’s gender, design and space specialists, XYX Lab, and digital consultancy, CrowdSpot, to gather perceptions of safety in public space and make real change in our local area.
Residents, workers and visitors to Nillumbik were encouraged to log their perceptions of safety in public places on an interactive map to help make more inclusive space for everyone to enjoy leisure, sport and play. Launched on 27 May 2021, YourGround maps local streets, parks, trails and recreational spaces, sharing the often hidden experiences of safety for women and gender-diverse people.
Statistics show that movement and access is restricted for women and gender-diverse people due to fear, violence and harassment: while 80% of Australian men report feeling safe while walking alone at night, a 2019 Community Council for Australia report notes that only 50% of women say the same. With the implementation of Victoria’s Gender Equality Act 2020, creating inclusive spaces for women and gender-diverse people is a priority state-wide.
YourGround is a proactive tool to help make positive change in our shared public spaces - spaces that should be accessible to everyone. The map crowdsourced data, allowing users to anonymously drop a pin, tell a story or share an experience while out for leisure, sport, exercise or play. After being collated and analysed this data was used to provide insights to make our cities, towns, parks and sporting and community spaces more inclusive and equitable.
The map was made accessible across Victoria and was open to anyone over 18 years identifying as a woman or gender diverse. YourGround project partners include local and state government supporters, including more than 15 Victorian councils and municipalities. Data gathered was managed by XYX Lab and CrowdSpot, and the project has been through Monash University ethics requirements.
The YourGround interactive map is available to view online.