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Bystander Awareness Initiative

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

The Mayor’s Office of Nightlife and Culture, Metropolitan Police Department, the Safe Bar Collective and the DC Rape Crisis Center is teaming up with Uber and NO MORE to launch the “Stand Up, Don’t Stand By,” bystander awareness initiative in DC targeted to the nightlife community which includes patrons, staff and rideshare drivers. DC bar and restaurant representatives were briefed on the initiative at Sudhouse (1340 U Street, NW, Washington DC).


The goal: to empower people with helpful tips and information they can use to be safe such as encouraging friends to stick together or watching out for someone who may be too intoxicated.


The multifaceted initiative includes training for those working in the nightlife community on recognizing signs and signals of potentially unsafe situations and how to intervene. The effort also raises awareness with patrons about things they can do to stay safe.


Billboards and posters will be posted in and around restaurants and bars in Washington DC along with messaging distributed via social media channels. Uber is also making bystander awareness information available to all drivers in the DC area and nationally.


“The Mayor’s Office is excited to announce this collaborative effort to prevent sexual assault. We take sexual assault offenses seriously and are proud to work with our partners to protect the values of our residents and make DC a safer city,” said Shawn Townsend, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Nightlife & Culture.


“As a police department, it is our job to focus on the safety and well-being of all District residents,” said Police Chief Peter Newsham of the Metropolitan Police Department. “Through these types of partnerships with local agencies, we can educate those that frequent and work in our nightlife areas about sexual assault and provide them with the resources to recognize and report these types of crimes.”


“The DC Rape Crisis Center is proud to partner with NO MORE and UBER on the Don't Stand By initiative that will empower the entire nightlife community to help stop violence before it starts,” said Indira Henard, Executive Director of the DC Rape Crisis Center. “This initiative is not only a game changer for the Washington, DC community, but it raises the level of individual accountability in creating a world free from sexual violence.”


"At CASS, we believe that education and community driven solutions to public harassment can prevent harassment and violence. The Safe Bar Collective program focuses specifically on bars and restaurants because we know that although alcohol doesn't cause violence, it is used as a weapon or an excuse in 50% of physical and sexual assaults. Our approach is survivor focused and led; our team teaches bar staff to recognize and respond to sexual harassment and everyday microaggressions because we know that bystander intervention in one of the most effective ways to prevent sexual assault,” said Ana Flores, Safe Bar Collective Director


“Our hope is to stop sexual assault before it starts by encouraging friends and other bystanders to step in and intervene when they see something,” said Tracey Breeden, Head of Women’s Safety at Uber. “The main goal with this initiative is to ensure respect, safety, and fun are all a part of going out—from the club door to the car door to the front door.”


We can all do a better job of watching out for each other in social settings, and help can sometimes be just a few steps away,” said Pamela Zaballa, Global Executive Director of NO MORE, which brings together the largest coalition of advocacy groups, service providers, governmental agencies, major corporations, universities, communities and individuals, all under a common brand and a unifying symbol in support of a world free of violence. “Our ongoing partnership with Uber offers a huge opportunity to raise awareness, support prevention initiatives, and ensure that potentially lifesaving resources are prominently available.”


Washington, DC will be the third city in the United States to launch this initiative. Uber and NO MORE launched this campaign in 2018 as a pilot in Las Vegas and Los Angeles, partnering with local law enforcement, advocates and the nightlife community in those cities. #DontStandBy is currently expanding to additional cities and will also expand across college campuses nationwide this year. See more on the effort at