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Dear Engaged Bystander:  If you are not aware of these free web conferences through Prevent Connect, it is well worth your time.  Dorothy Edwards, the founder of the Green Dot Program will be one of the highlighted speakers.  She talks eloquently about a bystander approach to changing social norms to prevent sexual violence.  Here is the information below: 

Dear Engaged Bystander: Sally Laskey, associate director of the NSVRC sent me a quick email about last week’s season premiere of the TV show 30 Rock. If you don’t know about this show, it is a very popular, prime time comedy series created by Tina Fey. The series is loosely based on Fey's experiences as head writer for Saturday Night Live and takes place behind the scenes of a fictional live sketch comedy series. 

Dear Engaged Bystander:  When I read a study that says by "asking about pregnancy coercion and intimate-partner violence can reduce their incidence" I have to sit up and take notice. Below is a brief overview of this recently released study.  Study finds asking about pregnancy coercion and intimate-partner violence can reduce their incidence Jay Silverman and Heather McCauley of  the Harvard School of Public Health, Rebecca Levenson of the Family Violence Prevention Fund, Michele R. Decker of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Daniel Tancredi of UC Davis.  

Dear Engaged Bystander:  I hope that others can learn from what we have done so far and share with us some other successes (or mistakes) along the way. Here are four tips: Tip One: Constructing bystander interventions as part of good customer service The foundation of our training is that we’re merely expanding their professional skills of the bar staff, and sexual violence prevention is part of excellent customer service. When a bar is seen as safe, comfortable, and enjoyable, with friendly and helpful staff, it leads to repeat business and good tips.

Dear Engaged Bystander: Two seemingly unrelated facts about me: I am a huge fan of primary prevention. And I am a Yelp-er. I rely on the consumer-review website for guidance about the best tailor in my neighborhood to where I can unfailingly find delicious ravioli or patio dining. So what do these things have to do with each other? I notice that while most reviewers (including myself) will praise an establishment or take it to task for the quality of the service or the price of the drinks, we rarely include “How safe do we feel there?” as an aspect of the service or atmosphere.

Dear Engaged Bystander: Yesterday and today are days to celebrate Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year.   It is usually a time for contemplation -- looking back at the mistakes of the past year and planning for changes to make in the New Year. In celebrating this holiday, I like to also think about what was good about the past year and to think about what to bring into my life (our lives) for the future.