If You Know Something is Wrong

When you see something happening that you know is wrong, what can you do?

  • Acknowledge: Notice a situation and pay attention to your gut instincts.
  • Assess: Assume the responsibility for taking action and evaluate your options.
  • Act: Use the IDEAS framework described below, and choose a strategy that is most appropriate in the situation. 
  • Affirm: You made a difference; your actions helped! Take care of yourself and seek support.

Who to Contact

Here are some offices that you can contact when you see something that you know is wrong.

The IDEAS Framework

I: Interrupt

Take action directly aimed at the situation:  “Excuse me…”

D: Distract

Without addressing the situation directly, you can create a distraction: “Hey, don’t I know you from math class?”

E: Engage peers

Use the crowd around you and involve a peer, a friend, or family member: “Could you help me…”

A: Authorities

In some cases, the authorities may be the best able to help. Be prepared to call for police or other assistance. Dial 911 for emergencies.

S: Safety

Even as you take action, remember to prioritize your safety.

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