Be more than a bystander....Break the silence
Quick Escape

TAKE ACTION : 5 ways to be more than a bystander to violence against women

1. Commit to being part of the solution

The change starts with you - with your words, your attitudes and your behaviours. Commit to never using violence against women, and to breaking the silence by speaking out against this abuse.

ACTION: When others make disrespectful or sexist comments about women, your silence can be taken as agreement. Those comments, and your silence, build a culture where it's okay to harass and abuse women. Refuse to join in. Walk away or tell them what they're saying is not okay with you.

2. Lead by example - Start by being aware of your own behaviour

Be aware of how your behaviour influences the behaviour of your son, your brother, your nephew, your colleagues, your friends and your teammates. When you speak and act respectfully toward women, you become a role model for others.

ACTION: Don't use language that reinforces negative views about women. Don't insult men by comparing them to women. Ex. You throw or run like a girl. Don't suggest only men have courage and strength. Ex. Fight like a man. Man up. Using these kinds of insults with men also insults your sisters, daughters, mothers, wives, girlfriends and women friends.

3. Tell others about this campaign

Expand the reach of this campaign to get other men involved in breaking the silence on violence against women.

ACTION: Use social media such as Twitter and Facebook. Click on the Stop the Violence Toolkit to download a banner for your website, print any of the posters or for suggestions on what to tweet and post on your wall along with the videos.

Talk to your family, friends, and others in your workplace, school or team. Encourage them to think about how they can play a role in this issue.

4. Offer your support

Talk to a woman you know, who is being abused emotionally, verbally, physically or sexually. Tell her you believe her and that it's not her fault. Be sure to talk to her without her partner being present. Help her get information on abuse and explore options to escape further abuse.

ACTION: You, or she, can call the family violence information/crisis line at 1 877-977-0007. Or explore resources available.

Support community agencies that work with families affected by domestic violence:
– make a donation (financial or necessary supplies)
– support a local fundraising event
– volunteer, or ask what you can do to help

5. Be careful to keep yourself safe.

ACTION: Do not get in the middle of a domestic dispute. Call police if you see an assault happening.