What is Active Bystander Intervention?
Active Bystander Intervention discourages victim blaming by switching the focus of prevention to what a community of people/students can do collectively.
This approach encourages people to identify situations that might lead to a sexual assault, a domestic assault or someone being bullied and then how to safely intervene to prevent the act from occurring. The approach also allows for a change in cultural expectations by empowering everyone to say or do something when they see inappropriate or harmful behavior. This method of intervention places the responsibility of prevention on everyone!
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Safety is paramount in active bystander intervention. Usually, intervening in a group is safer than intervening individually. Also, choosing a method of intervention that deescalates the situation is safer than attempting a confrontation. Some methods are direct, and some of them are less obvious to the perpetrator:
-Making up an excuse to get him/her out of a potentially dangerous situation
-Letting a friend or co-worker know that his or her actions may lead to serious consequences
-Never leaving a his/her side, despite the efforts of someone to get him/her alone or away from you
-Using a group of friends to remind someone behaving
inappropriately that his or her behavior should be respectful
-Taking steps to curb someone’s use of alcohol before problems occur
-Calling the authorities when the situation warrants