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We Act

Be an Active Bystander

Opportunities for UG and PGT students:

Why take part?

  • To develop your leadership and communication skills.
  • To help contribute to a more positive student experience for all.
  • Your department is supportive and are keen for students to participate.
  • Employers like your commitment to inclusion.
  • Activities are free.
  • The 10 hour course is HEAR accredited and eligible for the Warwick Award.

If you are a staff member (incl. postgraduate teaching):

What would you do if:

  • someone in your sports club is harassing women?
  • a friend makes a rape 'joke' at a party?
  • a peer makes a racist remark during a group project?
  • someone you know is being harassed at the bus stop?
  • someone tells you they have been a victim of homophobia?
  • you think a friend is being abused by their romantic partner?
  • a student in your class is being subject to microaggressions about their accent?

What is Active Bystander?

Active bystander strategies work in response to behaviours like sexual misconduct, harassment, racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and more.

There are several common reasonsLink opens in a new window why bystanders might not intervene. Developing our knowledge, skills, and confidence as active bystanders helps us to overcome these safely and with confidence.

As part our training, we learn to:

  1. Noticing unacceptable events or situations.
  2. Interpret them as a problem.
  3. Take responsibility for addressing it.
  4. We Act to prevent (further) harm.

The 5 D's

Only intervene in a way that is safe for you.

  • Distract: create a distraction to interrupt the harmful behaviour and/or offer a victim opportunity to move away.
  • Delegate: engage others with the necessary skills, training, or authority to assist in making an intervention.
  • Direct: challenge the behaviour or attitudes directly if it is safe to do so.
  • Delayed: offer support to the person affected by the situation, signpost to support services and reporting routes.
  • Document: make a record of key information to aid with delegating and reporting, and/or to dissuade further harmful behaviour.

Contacting the Community Safety team

Some previous students of the Active Bystander course asked what the experience of calling the Community Safety team is like. Together, we created this video to help explain the process: