Asking for Hugs in Australia

In 2012, a depressing survey revealed that just 13% of all Australians said they trusted Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. The dismal statistics prompted Australian artist Peter Sharpe to set up a social experiment in which schoolgirl Jasirah Bin Hitam bravely stood—blindfolded and open-armed—on a busy beach with a sign saying, “I trust you. Do you trust me? Let’s hug.” At first, people observe from afar, but after the first embrace, a flood of other huggers roll through and so do the warm, fuzzy feelings.