Bystander Engagement


Some simple steps to becoming an active bystander:

  • Notice the situation and be aware of your surroundings.
  • Interpret it as a problem. Ask yourself, “Do I believe someone needs help?”
  • Feel responsiblee to act. Educate yourself on what to do.
  • Intervene safely. Keeping yourself safe while taking action is key.

How to engage safely:

  • Bring in others to help when the situation may be potentially dangerous.
  • Ask a person you are concerned about if he or she is okay. Provide options and support.
  • Distract or redirect individuals in unsafe situations.
  • Ask the person if he or she wants to leave.
  • Call University Police (570) 941-7777 or Scranton Police (911).

What can my friends and I do to encourage safety?

  • Have a plan. Talk to your friends about your plans and intentions before you go out.
  • Watch out for others. If you are concerned about someone, offer your support.
  • Diffuse situations. If you see a friend coming on too strong to someone who may be too drunk to make a consensual decision, interrupt, distract, or redirect the situation. If you do not feel comfortable doing so, get someone else to step in.
  • Trust your instincts. If a situation does not feel right to you, trust your instinct and. If possible, remove yourself and others from the situation.

Information is based on Bystander Intervention research being completed at University of New Hampshire (Bringing in the Bystander®).

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