Bystander Intervention for Preventing Child Sexual Abuse

Bystander intervention is about reacting responsibly to a child’s physical boundaries. When a child says “no or stop”  to a behavior such as tickling or being asked to show affection towards an adult that they do not want , that boundary  needs to be respected.  Bystanders can describe the unwanted behavior to the offender, such as  “It looks like Tommy does not want to be tickled, you are making Tommy uncomfortable. Bystanders can then set a limit for the child, “please stop, we let Tommy decide if he wants to be tickled. ” Finally move on, “Tommy let’s go see what the other kids are doing.” Offenders  are rarely caught in the act of child sexual abuse, but they are often seen testing boundaries and breaking rules. It is important to know how to enforce boundaries and protect children. If the person continues to test boundaries and break rules, make a report.