Bystander Intervention

Being a Positive Bystander

At Marshall University we focus on being positive bystanders. Everyone has the potential to be a positive bystander in situations of sexual violence, interpersonal violence, harassment, discrimination and other concerning behaviors.

What is a bystander? A bystander is someone who sees or hears about a situation that could be potentially harmful and engages in prevention efforts.

All bystanders face a choice: Do I ignore the situation? Or do I step in and try to make things better?

You may never encounter a critical emergency. More likely, you could find yourself in everyday situations where you may notice behavior that could be disrespectful, harassing, controlling, coercive, or harmful.

You have the ability to:

  • stop a situation from escalating
  • help someone that could be at risk
  • prevent someone from making a decision that could harm themselves or another person