Eliminating sexual violence in Wellington is something the city's council is discussing adding to its long-term plan – marking a bold commitment to an ambitious goal.
But the capital's already breaking ground with an independent initiative to get bar goers out of uncomfortable or unsafe circumstances - and it starts with ordering an 'angel shot.'
It may sound like an exotic alcoholic beverage, but it's actually a discreet call of help made to bar staff that's also being promoted in areas in the United Kingdom, United States and South Africa.
Now Wellington woman and creator of Sophies Angels, Sophie Denman, is taking the global initiative one step further with the launch of Angel Cards in just over a week in the capital.
"The Angel Cards is if it is that emergency situation, you would help your customer into the Sophies Angels vehicle and then hand the driver the card.
"Doesn’t matter where this person is going; they will get a free ride all the way there and we will make sure they get into the house safely," she told 1 NEWS.
Seven bars, six of which come under Hospo Gurus management, have signed up to Sophies Angel Shots and Angels cards initiative.
Bartenders are taught to evaluate the situation and provide help, or call the police if the codeword "angel shot" is said.
It comes after Ms Denman launched her female taxi driver service last year, which takes passengers all days of the week from older people to school children.
It's for everyone to use, but has a predominantly women clientele.
Ms Denman is passionate about helping people who end up in tricky situations and felt inspired to start the company after hearing comments from passengers relieved to get a female Uber driver when she worked for the company.
It's something she's also experienced herself.
"It was a sexual assault which when I started this company it was really a lot about that and being able to get girls out of that situation as quickly as possible," she said.
"The amount of time girls need a comfortable ride most or anyone needs a comfortable ride most is those late nights in town where suddenly Uber is at three times surcharge and to go up the road’s going to cost you $40."
Hospo Gurus operations manager Steven Mawhinney said preventing sexual harassment and abuse in their bars is a big focus.
"To be able to spot the signs of people that are you know.. affected both ways as a potential victim or a potential assailant," he said.
Mr Mawhinney said while the issue has always been around, people are more likely to call out the behaviour now and many bar owners are paying more attention to it.
"The old adage of the guys being guys is dying thankfully, but unfortunately it's going to take a while to get rid of," he said.
Mr Mawhinney said Sophies Angels was a good service to support and he hoped she would be able to find funding to help it grow.
Hospitality New Zealand has also increased its focus on sexual health prevention, securing funding for some of its members' staff to be put through training from the Sexual Abuse Prevention Network.
While the timeline for training is yet to be decided, it will be carried out in main centres across the country at a cost of around $20,000, with an aim to extend the initiative in the future.
Sexual Abuse Prevention Network general manager Fiona McNamara said people serving alcohol at venues have a key role in stepping up to act against harassment and sexual abuse.
"Often in a venue they will be the only people who are sober, they also have more authority than other people around and so they can actually step in and do something which might be really hard for people’s friends or for another customer to do if they see something going wrong," she said.
She said everyone should play a role though and if patrons see something happening that looks a bit dodgy, it most likely is and requires intervention.
Ms McNamara said while some bars are leading the way in this area, other need to realise that this is an issue and their responsibility to educate themselves and take action.
"We know about bars that are doing things like having body cameras on their security staff so they can keep an eye on what's going on and use that as a deterrent for bad behaviour as well," she said.
Wellington City Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons is also supportive of Sophies Angels latest service, which is in line with her council swearing-in ambition to end sexual violence in the capital.
Ms Fitzsimons has helped Ms Denman to organise talks around the service receiving council funding.
Ms Denman has already had contact from bars in the wider Wellington region wanting to get involved, which she said is a great outcome but one that she will be taking slowly as she doesn’t want her company to grow too quickly while the service is still being fine-tuned.