Reducing Your Vulnerability
alert! Be aware and observant of your surroundings.
with confidence and purpose.
alcohol or other drugs that could cloud your judgment.
the neighborhoods where you live and work. Check out the locations of
police and fire stations, public telephones, hospitals, and restaurants,
or stores that are open late.
in well-lit areas. Be wary of isolated spots - apartment laundry rooms,
underground garages, parking lots, and offices after business hours.
not walk alone. Walk with a friend, co-worker, or security guard.
Be wary when
inviting someone to your residence or accepting an invitation to his or
flash large amounts of cash or other tempting targets like jewelry or
a purse close to your body, not dangling by the straps. Put a wallet in
an inside coat or front pants pocket, not a back pocket.
to use automated teller machines in the daytime. Have your card in hand
and don't approach the machine if you're uneasy about people nearby.
wear shoes or clothing that restricts your movements.
INSTINCTS! If something or someone makes you
uneasy, avoid the person or leave. Respond as soon as you feel
self-preservation defense techniques.
Awareness Near Home
Be sure the doors
of your residence are locked; when you are home or away.
your neighbors, so you have someone to call or go to if you feel
Use peepholes to
identify people before opening the door.
identification from service providers. Don't
be embarrassed to call into the service providerís office for
inside your residence to use the phone; make the call for them.
Never indicate to
anyone that you are alone.
and shades at night.
initials of your first name on your mailbox and in the telephone
areas such as laundries or parking garages, especially at night.
Always have your
key ready for quick entry into your residence.
Have a telephone
readily available near your bed for quick use at night.
□ If you find a door or window open or signs of forced entry upon arriving at your residence, don't enter. Go to the nearest phone and call the police.
Awareness When Walking
□ Avoid walking or jogging alone, especially at night.
well-lighted areas; avoid alleys, bushes, entryways, shortcuts
through wooded areas, or parking lots.
directly, and at a steady pace.
Walk on the side
of the street facing traffic.
anyone in a car asks you for directions keep your distance from the car
and only accept rides from people you know well.
Carry a whistle.
If you are
threatened attract help any way you can.
you think someone is following you, switch direction or cross the
street. Walk toward an open store, restaurant, or lighted house. If
you're scared, yell for help.
□ Have to work late? Make sure there are others in the building, and ask someone - a colleague or security guard - to walk you to your car or transit stop.
Awareness in Your Car
□ Have your key ready when you approach your vehicle.
Check inside your
vehicle before entering.
roll up the windows and lock car doors, even if you're coming right
parking in isolated areas, remote lots or underground parking garages.
pick up hitchhikers. Don't hitchhike.
Keep your vehicle
in good repair. Make certain you have enough fuel.
your vehicle if you develop mechanical trouble. Keep the doors locked
and the windows up until help arrives. To signal distress, put up the
hood or display a sign. If someone stops to offer help, don't leave the
vehicle; ask that they call the police or a service provider.
If involved in a
minor collision at night or in an isolated location, do not exit to
inspect damage or contact the other driver. Signal the other driver with
your lights, and proceed to the nearest lighted and occupied business or
If you are
followed, drive to the nearest open business for help, or go to a police
or fire station.
on Buses and Subways
well-lighted, busy stops.
alert! Don't doze or daydream.
harasses you, don't be embarrassed. Loudly say, "Leave me
alone!" and distance yourself from the person. If that doesn't
work, hit the emergency device.
exits with you. If you feel uneasy, walk directly to a place where there
are other people.
feel embarrasses to get back on the transit vehicle and go to the next
□ Share your concerns with the attendant.