Outer Banks Safe Bars is a program that uses ground-breaking bystander education tactics to empower Outer Banks Restaurants & Bars staff as well as local and visiting patrons to stand up against sexual harassment and drug-facilitated sexual assault. The Outer Banks Hotline is dedicated to bringing a safe community environment throughout the Outer Banks for local and visitors alike. For Patrons, find Safe Bars to visit and have a fun and safe time. For Restaurants and Bar owners and staff, get trained and become aware of unsafe situations and how to handle them, creating a safe environment for your customers will prompt them to return.
More info on participating restaurants & Barsto below! More are currently being certified!
For Bar Patrons
Tips for partying safely
Before going out make a safety plan with a friend. When you go out go with a friend or group of friends and check in with each other. Make a plan to get home safely before going out. Go together and leave together.
Have a backup plan for getting home safely. Have money and phone numbers for a taxi. Be wary about going to an after party or leaving with someone you have met while at a bar.
Watch your drink do not take drinks from strangers or leave your drink unattended. Be aware of anyone who is trying to get you to drink too much alcohol. Alcohol is the most common substance used in drug facilitated sexual assault and can be used to minimize resistance, alter memory, and compromise your ability to defend yourself.
Stay aware of your surroundings and how much you have had to drink and how you feel. Do you feel more intoxicated than you should? Many drugs commonly referred to as date rape drugs are not detectible by sight or taste in your drink.
Have code words to use with friends to let them know if you are uncomfortable. Lie – come up with an excuse to leave a situation where you feel uncomfortable.
Bystander Intervention – looking out for your friends
C.A.R.E (source: RAINN Rape Abuse & Incest National Network, www.rain.org)
Create a distraction: Do what you can to interrupt the situation. A distraction can give the person at risk a chance to get to safety.
Ask Directly: Talk to the person who might be in trouble. Ask questions like “Who did you come here with?” or “Would you like me to stay with you?”
Refer to authority: Ask for help from bar staff or others. Sometimes the safest way to intervene is to refer to a neutral party with authority to change the situation. Don’t hesitate to call 911 if you are concerned for someone’s safety.
Enlist others: It can be intimidating to approach a situation alone. Enlist another person to support you. Enlist a friend of the person you are concerned about. “You’re friend looks like they’ve had a lot to drink can you check on them?”
If you are sexually assaulted it is not your fault. Support is available 24/7 by contacting Outer Banks Hotline’s crisis line at 473-5121.
When going out check out participating Outer Banks Safe Bars and have fun.
For Bar Staff
Goals of Outer Banks Safe Bars Project:
- Promote an environment of safety in local bars and establishments serving alcohol
- Inform bar staff and patrons about
- Create dialog addressing alcohol/ drug impairment and sexual assault
- Empower bystanders with intervention ideas if someone is drugged or intoxicated and at risk of sexual
Bars are places where people can gather with friends, celebrate and have a good time. Alcohol does not cause sexual assault but perpetrators can use these environments to target someone who is vulnerable to assault. Drugs often referred to as date rape drug are typically flavorless, odorless, and are undetectable in the body within 36 hours of ingestion. Alcohol is the most commonly used substance in sexual assault. Drug facilitated sexual assault (DFSA) occurs when drugs or alcohol are used to minimize resistance, diminish memory and ability to consent to sexual activity. This puts bar owners and staff in a unique position to increase safety of patrons through awareness of DFSA and how to safely intervene if a patron or staff person needs assistance.
Outer Banks Safe Bars provides training for local bar and restaurant staff on drug facilitated sexual assault and bystander intervention. The training is free and can be arranged around the needs of your establishment.
Outer Banks Safe Bars is happy to share name of participating Outer Banks Safe Bars on this website. Participating bars will also have a decal identifying them as a participating establishment in the safe bars program. As a participant in OBSB you show your commitment to providing patrons with a safe and welcoming environment and let patrons know that staff can help them if they need assistance. A safe environment allows patrons to enjoy time out with friends and want to come back.
A 24-hour crisis phone line (252-473-3366) that connects a distressed caller to a volunteer trained to listen and make referrals. Topics include suicide, family problems, depression, substance abuse,
domestic violence and sexual assault.
If you or someone you know is in need of help, please call our 24-hour Hotline.