Wednesday, 1 June 2011

It's our business

This clip easily made me feel happier than anything else I've seen on television for quite some time. Take a bow, three beautiful young men in Hastings who stepped in when they could see a 12 year old girl was being targeted by two adult men.

In my day job, I encourage people to intervene - safely - when they see precursor situations to sexual and dating violence. I write and deliver workshops which try and undermine ideas of victim-blaming, and try and raise awareness of how most kinds of sexual and dating related harm happen. So that people know when to step in, and know how to do that safely.

Because that's what will stop sexual and dating violence. A community that doesn't look the other way, or think "that's not my business". A community that looks after one another, and doesn't expect women to "protect themselves," but expects all of us, all the time, to look out for one another. Skills and empathy transferable to other kinds of violence, bullying and harassment.

As Liam Mataira, one of the Hastings young men, says:

"Don't walk away from something bad that's happening if you can change it."


Story of O said...

""Don't walk away from something bad that's happening if you can change it."

Funny.... that policeman in Toronto was doing something very similar to that when he cautioned Women to be careful about dress and actions that increased the probabilities of attaching rapists and he was pilloried for it....

How the world turns....

LadyNews said...

Err... no. The two boys didn't see a girl in a short school uniform and say to her "hey, you might want to put on a longer skirt because you're asking for trouble in that one".

The quote (from Liam Mataira) was referring to "something bad that is happening" - as in a crime that is in progress at that time. If the Toronto policeman had said "if you see someone trying to rape someone, then intervene" he would have been doing something similar to what was said in this case.