Being an Effective Bystander

What is a Bystander?

• A bystander is a person who is present when an event takes place but isn’t directly involved. Bystanders might be present when sexual assault or abuse occurs–or they could witness the circumstances that lead up to these crimes.

• Stepping in as a bystander may give the person you’re concerned about a chance to get to a safe place or leave the situation.

• A key first step in being an effective bystander is heightened awareness so individuals and groups are better able to identify instances of sexual violence.

• While it’s not always easy to decide to step in and take action, it’s important to realize that your actions can have a big impact.

• In many situations, bystanders have the opportunity to prevent comes like sexual assault from happening in the first place.