Exe-Change the Norm
In the UK 71% of women have experienced sexual harassment in a public space (UN Women). It doesn’t have to be this way.
When we see or hear sexual harassment and do nothing, we empower the harasser.
The same goes for jokes, unwanted comments and ‘banter’ that degrade women girls - when we let this stuff pass, we create a culture in which others feel able to take it further.
If you noticed harassment, would you know what to do?
Get the skills
Bystander intervention training gives you the skills and confidence to step in and respond to potentially harmful situations - be that diffusing it, offering help to the victim or calling on others to help you out.
It doesn’t have to be confrontational - a few calm words can make the difference - and when we intervene skilful, we encourage others to do so too, sparking positive culture change.
Exe-Change the Norm is a FREE bystander intervention training being offered in Exeter. Together we can stop harassment, assault and violence against women and girls in our city - step up, sign up, and get the skills to make a change.
What, Where & When?
Exe-Change the Norm is a 6 hour training delivered over 3 x 2hr sessions or in a single day. The training venues are all in Central Exeter.
Don’t worry - it’s not a lecture - the training is participatory and practical, draws on the most up-to-date evidence and is delivered by expert trainers.
Click to see dates and reserve your place online.
If you are an organisation and able to bring together a group of 20 people to be trained - please get in touch via email. We’ll arrange some additional sessions and come to you.
This training is delivered FREE thanks to Safer Exeter.
How to spot sexual harassment
Sexual harassment in public places can take many forms, and they are always unacceptable, making women feel degraded and humiliated. Here are just some examples:
- Verbal: Catcalls and wolf whistles in the street, sexual, inappropriate comments (directly to someone or about them)
- Body language: Staring and leering
- Physical: Touching, grabbing or rubbing up against someone, invading someone’s personal space
There are many more examples of unwanted interactions in a public place. The point is, if a woman or girl is experiencing unwanted attention and feeling uncomfortable, there are ways for you to step up, step in and intervene in a skillfull and safe way.
How to intervene safely and skillfully
Ever heard a joke or comment and thought ‘that’s not okay!’? Been out in a pub or club and seen something dodgy happening but weren't sure what to do? Who hasn’t?
If you witness a situation in a pub or club, or even on the street, where a woman is experiencing unwanted attention and inappropriate behaviour, then there are ways to intervene and stop the situation from escalating. Here are some examples:
- Interrupt and ask a question e.g. “what’s the time?” or “is that the latest version of that phone?”
- Express disapproval e.g. “that’s not okay” or “don’t do that” or “not cool, mate”
- Distract, e.g. suggest their mates are waiting for them and are about to leave
- Engage an ally, such as the bar staff or a friend
- Check in with the person who’s been harassed and ask if they’re ok
De-escalating the situation
Try to remain calm, take a breath and allow space between you and the perpetrator. Try non-threatening body language - stand alongside them, with palms down, rather than face to face. Use short sentences and don’t get drawn into an argument - if they’re feeling aggravated they’re not ready to hear your reasons.
Above all, if the situation is unsafe or you see someone in immediate danger of physical or sexual violence, dial 999.
Support and Signposting
If you are in immediate danger call 999 now.
If you are not in danger but would like to report a crime to the police you can do so by completing an online form or by calling 101.
For confidential support contact
Devon Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Services 01392 204174
Rape Crisis England & Wales 24/7 Helpline 0808 500 2222
FearLess – Devon Domestic Abuse Support 0345 155 1074
Refuge - National Domestic Abuse 24/7 Helpline 0808 2000 247