There’s a heavy energy in the air right now. If I was to put a title on it, I’d say it’s grief. The one-after-another news stories relating to violence against women, in many forms, have been heartbreaking to follow – leading many women to question not only whether they’re safe (seemingly not) but if anything will ever change.
The stories of Sarah Everard, Gabby Petito and Sabina Nessa – among so many others – are chilling reminders of the very real dangers women face every day. A reminder we’re given far too often. And while there is little we can say right now that will ease the weight of these tragic losses, there is some slight comfort to be found in the knowledge that many of us carry an emergency SOS alarm in our pockets, without even knowing it.
Amy Voce of Virgin Radio UK took to Instagram a few months ago to share the news with people needing to feel a little safer.
Here’s how it works:
As Voce explains in her post, pressing your lock button five times in a row will drive your iPhone to play a loud siren sound. It will then count down to three, before calling emergency services and texting your emergency contacts. Your phone will alert your contacts about your emergency situation and will send them your location.
How to set up Emergency SOS in your iPhone:
Search for ‘Emergency SOS’ or visit Settings > Emergency SOS. From here, you can check to see if your ‘Call with Side Button’ and ‘Auto Call’ functions are activated.
I know it doesn’t change the painful state of things, and no one tool can help every person impacted by violence, but as Voce wrote “I feel this is a little known fact that could make us ALL feel safer”.
This article has been updated since its original publish date.