Action Matters

to promote a culture of action and intervention when inaction will result in physical or emotional harm.

What do you do when someone is hurting? Most victims not only need a friend, they also need help. Don’t be a bystander. Be the change.

Are you a helpful bystander or a hurtful bystander?

Hurtful bystanders

  • Some bystanders instigate the situation by prodding the abuser
  • Other bystanders encourage the situation by laughing, cheering or making comments that further stimulate the abuser
  • Some bystanders join in the situation once it has begun
  • Most bystanders passively accept the situation by watching and doing nothing (often without realizing it, these bystanders also contribute to the problem)

Bystanders also have the power to play a key role in preventing or stopping these victimizing situations.

Helpful bystanders

  • Some bystanders directly intervene by discouraging the abuser, defending the victim or redirecting the situation away from physical or emotional abuse.
  • Other bystanders get help by rallying support from peers to stand up against the situation or by reporting the situation.

Adapted from