With the fun, festive, and lucky spirit that will be encompassing Ann Arbor this St. Patrick’s Day weekend, one thing is for sure, people are going to be celebrating. If going out to alcohol-serving establishments will be a part of your celebration this holiday weekend, we at the Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center (SAPAC) want you to be sure you leave your home knowing which bars have your back. A variety of Ann Arbor establishments have completed SAPAC’s Raise the Bar training program and are prepared to be active bystanders for their patrons. This means that bar staff will take steps to speak up or step in if they see any of their patrons in uncomfortable, unwanted, or unsafe situations.
Raise the Bar is an innovative training program that works collaboratively with local establishments and bar staff to increase awareness of sexual assault and gender-based violence and to provide bar staff with the skills they need to effectively intervene if a patron is receiving unwanted attention. Bar staff practice these skills with Raise the Bar facilitators and discuss how they can do more to make their establishment a safer, more inclusive community. So far twelve Ann Arbor bars have been trained including Good Time Charley’s, B+B Cantina, Bill’s Beer Garden, Ashley’s, HopCat, Buffalo Wild Wings, Conor O’Neills, The Blue Leprechaun, Study Hall Lounge, Necto Nightclub, Rush Nightclub, and Bar Louie.
The next time you drop by one of these establishments be sure to thank them for going the extra mile to prevent sexual assault and gender-based violence and keep an eye out for Raise the Bar merchandise such as coasters and a poster campaign that is now underway! It’s more than St. Patrick’s Day luck that so many establishments in our community are dedicated to looking out for their patrons. Be sure to let your friends know who is “Raising the Bar.”
To learn more about Raise the Bar and the work we do visit our Facebook page. Do you or someone you know work in an alcohol-serving establishment that wants to go through our training? Reach out to us at email@example.com; we would LOVE to chat with you.
Contributed By: Danielle Dros