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People are sharing an international hand signal which is used to indicate

The simple hand signal that lets people know you’re in danger: Women’s charity campaign goes viral as people share ways to stay safe on the streets

  • Hand signal to help those in danger has gone viral in UK after Sarah Everard case
  • Developed by Canadian Women’s Foundation involves holding hand out with palm forward and thumb tucked before bending fingers to trap the thumb
  • Since developed internationally to indicate danger and home or on the street 

A simple hand gesture to indicate if you’re in danger has gone viral as people have been sharing ways to stay safe on the street and at home following the murder of Sarah Everard.     

The signal, which was originally developed at the beginning of the pandemic by the Canadian Women’s Foundation, involves holding out your hand with your thumb down, before clasping your fingers over your thumb to form a front facing fist.

It was designed as a way for a domestic violence victims to show they are in distress without being noticed, but can also be used in other situations of peril. 

The hand gesture can be used on a video call without leaving a digital footprint, or  discreetly when answering the door. 

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A simple hand gesture to indicate if you’re in danger has gone viral as people have been sharing ways to stay safe on the street and at home following the murder to Sarah Everard

Since being developed last year, it’s become an international symbol of help.

In the last week it’s been widely shared in the UK, since the disappearance and murder of Sarah Everard.

Ms Everard went missing on March 3 as she walked home from a friend’s house in Clapham, south London.  Her body was found hidden in Kent woodland last week.     

Her murder has caused a global conservation about male acts of violence against women, with women sharing ways men can help them to feel safer on the streets.

A video shared to Twitter by restaurateur Harjinder Singh Kukreja, which has since been viewed more than six million times, shows how the signal can be used in different situations, including by a woman signalling it from a balcony to a stranger on the street, a man using when opening the door to a delivery person and child using it to ask for help too. 

As well as the hand signal, thousands of people have shared an iPhone hack to help if you’re in danger.  

The feature allows iPhone users to make an SOS call and share your location to your emergency contacts in a simple move by pressing the side button five times.

As well as the hand signal, thousands of people have shared an iPhone hack to help if you're in danger. The feature allows iPhone users to make an SOS call and share your location to your emergency contacts in a simple move by pressing the side button five times.

As well as the hand signal, thousands of people have shared an iPhone hack to help if you’re in danger. The feature allows iPhone users to make an SOS call and share your location to your emergency contacts in a simple move by pressing the side button five times.

You can also set up iPhones with the option to call using nothing but the side button, making the process quicker.   

The phone then gives off a loud siren, counting down from three to one.

Once the countdown is finished emergency services will be called and alerted a location will be sent to them.  

Victims of domestic abuse will now be able to access support from thousands of pharmacies across the UK using the codeword 'Ask for Ani'

Victims of domestic abuse will now be able to access support from thousands of pharmacies across the UK using the codeword ‘Ask for Ani’

It follows a new initiative which started in January this year for anyone who is suffering from domestic abuse is able to get help in a ‘discreet’ way  at pharmacies across the UK.

Victims are able to access support from thousands of pharmacies across the UK using the codeword ‘Ask for Ani’.    

Trained staff in 2,300 Boots and 255 other pharmacies will know to take customers to one side and discuss their options. 

As soon as they ‘Ask for Ani’ they will be taken to a private consulting room where they will be put in touch with the police, support services for victims or helplines. 

ANI’ stands for Action Needed Immediately and also sounds like the name Annie – letting victims raise an alarm without tipping off an abuser when shopping – which is often their only trip out. 

Window posters will allow victims to easily identify from outside that certain pharmacies are taking part. 

The phrase will be promoted using discreet social media adverts.  

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