Many opportunities exist in daily life where people can help prevent behaviors that promote power-based personal violence.
A bystander is someone who intervenes before, during, or after a situation.
- A Bystander can be Proactive or Reactive
- Reactive-in the moment intervention when you notice a potentially harmful situation
- Proactive- setting norms that violence isn’t going to be tolerated before harmful behaviors even happen
- Bystanders can speak up when they witness these actions to foster a campus community where violence isn’t tolerated, and everyone will do their part to step in.
- Direct- Saying something directly to the people involved (person being harmed, and or person doing harm) and address the behavior, acknowledge that what is happening is not okay
- Delegate- Ask someone to step in maybe a friend of the people involved, maybe a bartender, an RA, or law enforcement. This is a great strategy for a bystander who wants to help, but, may feel uncomfortable or unsafe addressing the situation directly.
- Distract- Doing something that can take the focus off of whatever the negative behavior might be. For example: spill a drink, turn off the music, tell someone their car is getting towed, pretend you need help finding your keys etc.
- Attend sexual violence prevention and awareness events.
- Display buttons, stickers, and messages with the Green Dot logo, or other violence prevention messaging.
- Join groups on social media that promote equality, etc.
When and How to Intervene:
- Every situation is different. There is no universal response when intervening to prevent a potentially harmful situation.
- Safety is key in deciding when and how to respond to violence.
- Every person must make their own decision about the safest and most meaningful way to intervene.
- The campus wide Green Dot initiative provides both Reactive and Proactive strategies for intervening so that people can find a way to intervene that is comfortable and realistic for them.
- When considering reactive intervention strategies consider the 3D’s of