Being more than a bystander calls upon allies to step up and end gender-based violence. Often people don’t know what to do when they see someone experiencing violence or abuse. As a bystander there are lots of safe ways you can intervene. If you don’t know the person, you can offer your presence or ask the woman if she is okay. Sometimes using distraction is very effective – simply ask “Do you know what time it is?” – this gives the woman a chance to walk away. If you know the person and it is safe, ask if there is anything you can do to help. The key message behind all of these suggestions is simple: Be More Than A Bystander.
When we see someone drowning or we see a child who is lost, we are quick to respond. Yet, many people hesitate to help when they see someone being hurt. The Be More Than a Bystander program brings professional athletes into classrooms and dressing rooms to meet with our youth. Players teach our youth how to recognize unhealthy dynamics or abuse and give tools and suggestions on how they can safely intervene. These beginning conversations give youth a platform to both recognize and intervene safely.
Being more than a bystander moves away from complacency – instead of staying silent, allies learn to intervene. You can start your journey towards ending gender-based violence by joining the Steel City Allies.