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Bystander Intervention Training with Dax Valdes - PART 5 (Direct)

Dax Valdes is a senior trainer at Hollaback. SIGN UP FOR The 5 D's of BYSTANDER INTERVENTION TRAINING GET TRAINED IN BYSTANDER INTERVENTION by Hollaback in collaboration with ASIAN AMERICANS ADVANCING JUSTICE. To offer your own advice, call Zak @ 844-935-BEST


ZAK: Thanks for listening to The Best Advice Show. This is part 5 of our week-long series on Bystander Intervention training. With the help of Dax Valdes from Hollaback, we've been going through the 5 D's of Bystander Intervention.

DAX: Distract. Delay. Delegate. Document. Direct.

ZAK: Five actionable steps we can take out in the world if and when we see someone being harassed. And it's this final D, direct, that seems the most daunting.

DAX: So, direct is this is one that everyone thinks about when they think about bystander intervention. You are setting the boundary about what you want the person to do. Hey, stop talking to her that way. That's not cool. And then, that engagement is over and then you turn and you focus on the person who is experiencing that conflict and then you get them out of there. Get them to where they need to feel safe. So, if it's something that's happening on the street, hey man. Why don't you back off and stop saying things to her. And then I would turn to the woman and say, hey, let's get out of here. Let's go for a few blocks and make sure you are all taken care of. And direct can get tricky because the person that is doing the conflict would probably want to get into a back-and-forth with you and it's gonna take all of our will power not to shoot back with the thing that's gonna be the most explosive to meet their energy.

ZAK: Direct in particular seems like a real delicate dance because like you say, you're not being combative but you're being resistant in a way. You're being calm but you're also being assertive. This is a challenging one, I think.

DAX: Yeah, that does take a lot of practice. Cause, a lot of folks might not feel that comfortable being that direct but, again, if they see somebody doing it in a way that is, oh, I think I could do it. And so maybe it's not the next time they see an incident of harassment happening but maybe the time after that. Seeing two instances, it's like, ok, I can do this. I know what to say and I feel confident enough to do so. And even if it does not go the way that you might originally plan, you have 4 of the other strategies to rely on so maybe direct didn't work and it is something like, delegate, asking somebody else to help you in that instance. Maybe it is somebody who is physically bigger nearby. Hey, can you come here and just help me out here. This guy is yelling at this woman and you look you could, squash him.

ZAK: Yeah, you said to do this well it's gonna take some practice. So are you suggesting that there's a way to practice this stuff outside of the loaded situations?

DAX: You know, sometimes you're sitting at home, thinking about what you would do in this particular instance if you saw this conflict happening but knowing what these strategies are and reading other people's stories about what happened and what you could have done or thinking about like, oh yeah, I could have done it this way. I could have done it that way is a start for that. But, again, the action doesn't have to be incredibly huge. A small gesture goes a long way. Are you ok? What do you need from me in this moment? How can I support you?

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