Tips for Staying Safe
- Think about how you carry your car keys. Do you hold your keys in the hand
you are most likely to use to defend yourself, your dominant hand? Learn to
open your car and house doors with either hand. Consider wearing your keys on a
bracelet-style chain; then if you let go they won't drop.
- What information are you giving out without even realizing it? Carrying
your mail in plain view, for instance, gives anybody who looks the gift of your
name and address.
- If your answering machine says, "Hello, this is Susan," it may
sound like you're a woman living alone. If it states your phone number, know
that people can use that to find out where you live. Consider what you want
phone callers to know about you.
To "Avoid" Stranger Rape
- Use deadbolts; window locks; peep holes; timers for lights, radio, TV, and
outside security lights.
- Never open door to strangers; require ID of service or repair people.
- Plan several escape routes from your home.
- If you are a single woman - use only initials at door and in phone book.
Pretend there is a man at home if someone calls.
- If you come home and something looks wrong or different - do not enter; go
to a safe place and call police.
ON THE STREET:
- Go with others.
- Vary routines; go different ways at different times.
- Know where the safe places are; businesses that are open late, homes where
people are up late, etc.
- If a situation feels wrong, get away fast.
- Stay away from bushes and parked cars; walk in the center of the sidewalk
IN YOUR CAR:
- Always lock doors - when you are in the car and when you leave it, even if
only for a short time.
- Park near lights at night.
- Have keys in hand when leaving building for car, or leaving car for
- Drive with windows mostly closed.
- Keep car in good working order and keep gas tank at least 1/4 full.
- In case of a breakdown, stay in locked car; if assistance is offered,
request that police be called.
ON THE JOB:
- Do not work late alone; keep company with others.
- Go to the parking lot with others or ask security to accompany you.
- Vary route (and time if possible) to and from work.
- Maintain assertiveness with coworkers.
To "Avoid" Date Rape
- Communicate clearly - make sure your date understands your sexual
- Be assertive - stand up for your rights. You have a right to protect
- Avoid alcohol and drugs - they may impair your thought and action.
- Date with friends until you feel comfortable with a new date. Never
leave a bar or party with someone you have just met. Don't let yourself be
- Stay in control - offer to share expenses so there is no question of
"owing" your date. Carry extra money to get you home or to make a
phone call for help.
- Trust your intuition - if you feel that there is something wrong
with a person or situation, get away immediately.
Remember: No matter how many or how few safety precautions you use, it is
never your fault if you are raped.