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The Take Charge team organized a workshop on POSH, POCSO, Digital safety and Bystander Intervention on the 11th of December. The workshop was conducted by members of the Red Dot Foundation. The organization aims to make cities safer especially for women, by crowdsourced data and technology.

This workshop gave us great insights, making us aware of things that otherwise go unnoticed in our surroundings, and how we as individuals can protect ourselves as well as help others.

Some of the topics highlighted in the session were - the difference between gender and biological sex of a person, the unconscious biases that are created and challenging these. A short briefing on the procedures involved in ‘Filing an FIR’ offline as well as online and how to report a ‘Cybercrime’ case.

The nuances of ‘Bystander Intervention’ were showcased through short videos which helped us understand the action and response better. These included the following responses:

Distract - divert attention from the victim by pretending to be their friend, causing a commotion, or striking up a conversation

Delegate - Find someone who can help like a bus driver, policeman etc.

Document - Take videos or photos of the incident, victim etc. which can be used as proof

Delay - Keep the victim company by talking to them and provide them an outlet to express their feelings.

Direct - Ask the victim if they are ok, or they need something from you.

There were games and polls during the workshop which made it interactive and interesting. It gave us an opportunity to understand sensitive situations from a different perspective.

Prerana and Jyoti explained the Acts and terms so well and Tania shared a few stories of people to understand the connection between reality and legality, and how people have received protection.

Some of the things that I learnt during this workshop were... your safety is primary, while the Law is there to protect you it is important for you to understand the situation you are surrounded with and make sure that your safety is not at risk. Secondly, make an impactful move, being expressive is good but how you express yourself in any situation is what makes the difference. And lastly, be an effective bystander, intervene to make people feel safe and work towards building a ‘Safe city’ and environment.

A big thanks to Red Dot Foundation and the team for sharing their knowledge with us to make safety a priority in our lives.

Sherlyn Pereira


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