Do One Thing (D.O.T.)

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Reducing and preventing campus violence one action at a time


“No one has to do everything. Everyone has to do something.”


The University of Texas System – Bystander Intervention Initiative

It only takes one person doing one thing to help prevent campus violence.  The University of Texas at El Paso is committed to preventing power-based violence…sexual assault, stalking, domestic violence, and rape.  D.O.T (Do One Thing) is the University’s strategy of intervention, education, and awareness to help our community be involved in preventing these types of violent acts. Individuals acting in that moment are the key in this effort. This effort subscribes to the concepts on intervention espoused by Greendot, an organization that trains universities and other groups nationwide, including the military.

A large part of the UTEP effort is through presentations and training offered throughout the year.  From overviews of Bystander Intervention that can be 3 minutes to 60 minutes to all day training, we are committed to educating the university on the issue of Bystander Intervention and giving the community tools to identify and address personal, power based violence if they encounter it.

The exposure of these types of campus violence are more prevalent in our national news and the Presidential agenda to reduce sexual assault on college campuses has focused the spotlight on this issue.  Click here to see how this has made it to one of the most public events in the country.

Why a Green Dot?  Imagine a map of campus and on this map are red dots…each one representing an act of violence/intimidation/ coercion against someone in the community.  Then imagine each of those red dots being covered by a green dot.  Green Dots can be reactive or proactive.   Each green dot represents an individual who stepped in (a “Bystander”) and helped prevent a violent act (a reactive green dot) as it was occurring.  Or, a green dot may represent an educational program that teaches the community about campus violence and because of this education, a violent act was averted (a proactive green dot). What will your green dot(s) be?

Campus dot map
This map is for illustration purposes only and does not represent any actual incidents at the UTEP campus.

The Three D’s of D.O.T Intervention: Direct, Distract, and Delegate

You may be wondering about how you can intervene if you see an incidence of violence happening or a situation has the potential for violence?  You may have concerns for your own safety and welfare or perhaps being confrontational is not part of who you are.  Part of the Green Dot philosophy is teaching bystanders how to intervene in a manner that is comfortable for for them.

Direct: A direct intervention is exactly as it says; a bystander confronts a situation him or herself.  For example, you may witness a situation developing with a friend and another person that looks like it may escalate so you step in and pull your friend out of the situation and walk him/her away.  When safe, being direct is the most immediate way to intervene in a situation.

Distract: Perhaps you don’t want to address a situation directly then you can try to cause a distraction that will diffuse the situation and give a moment for things to calm down.  Maybe you “accidentally” spill your drink or ask to borrow a cell phone from the person who is in the threatening situation.  Sometimes that one break in a situation is all it takes to help someone out.

Delegate: If you can’t intervene directly in something because there is a  barrier that makes you uncomfortable, then enlist some help.  Ask friends to assist you or talk to a faculty or staff member.  Maybe it means you need to call the police.  Doing a Green Dot intervention does not mean you have to do it alone.

 To see examples of people intervening using some of these strategies go to our video page.


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