Miami Beach Is Fighting Sexual Assault. Now Hotel Housekeepers Will Get Panic Buttons

Jul 26, 2018

Beginning next year, Miami Beach’s hotel housekeepers will be armed.

Their weapon, panic buttons, will help combat sexual harassment and assault in the workplace, a problem that is being more widely discussed and addressed following the emergence of the #MeToo movement. Beginning Aug. 1, 2019, Miami Beach will be the third tourism town, after Seattle and Chicago, to mandate that hotels provide the devices. The Beach is calling them “safety buttons.”

The Miami Beach City Commission voted unanimously Wednesday to arm workers with panic buttons after Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez proposed the measure late last year, following her own alleged assault. According to Rosen Gonzalez, former Miami Beach City Commission candidate Rafael Velasquez exposed his penis to her in her car.

“This is about changing inappropriate behavior in hospitality and it’s mostly men, I hate to say it. But guests have gotten away with this behavior for way too long,” Rosen Gonzalez said in an interview.

Read more at our news partner, the Miami Herald