The Shift – Individuals and Allies

Working with our male allies in the industry and community to change the culture where women work.



This three-day intensive program trains male leaders and influencers from the skilled trades industry to be spokesmen for the Be More Than a Bystander program and facilitate a two-hour workshop about intervention strategies for gender-based bullying, harassment and violence. The program is facilitated by EVA BC anti-violence experts and former Canadian Football League players.

How much does it cost? 
This program is free to successful applicants

Who can apply?
Men from the industry that represent employers, contractors, unions, trades training providers or other related organizations.

What are the learning outcomes?

  • Facts and figures about gender-based, bullying harassment and violence
  • Effective, de-escalating intervention strategies
  • The power of men stepping in and speaking up
  • Learn to facilitate a two-hour Be More Than a Bystander workshop

Certificate of completion?

Is there a screening process for applicants?
Yes. In order to maintain the integrity of the program all applicants go through a screening process. This includes a review of the application form and a phone interview by BCCWITT staff. Applicants that pass this first level of screening will be asked to submit a Criminal Record Check to confirm that there are no charges related to violence.

I’m not ready to apply, how do I find out more? 
We would be happy talk to you, contact us at

Help for Targets of Bullying, Harassment or Violence
VictimLink BC: A toll-free, confidential, multilingual telephone service available across BC 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It provides information and referral services to all victims of crime and immediate crisis support to victims of family and sexual violence.

SHARP Workplaces: SHARP Workplaces provides sexual harassment advice, response, and prevention resources for workplaces in British Columbia.

WorkSafeBC: Information about health and safety issues in the workplace, including a Prevention Information Line that can offer support on how to report an unsafe workplace.

Ending Violence Association of BC: If you or someone you know is experiencing violence and need help, please visit EVA BC’s website for a list of service providers in BC.

Be More Than a Bystander Interventions

What is a bystander?
A bystander is someone who recognizes when violence is occurring but does not intervene.

Being more than a bystander means:

  • Taking action to confront harassment, racism, bullying, gender-based violence, and abuse
  • Creating safe, respectful environments
  • Being a leader and taking action to change the unsafe situation
  • Doing something when you see or hear something disrespectful
  • It’s NOT ONLY about stepping in when there is severe violence (physical or sexual assault). We can also Be More Than a Bystander when people say or do things like…
    • Make inappropriate jokes
    • Make others feel uncomfortable
    • Harassing or belittling behaviour

Safety first

Safety is an important part of bystander intervention. You don’t want to intervene at the expense of your safety, or anyone’s safety

  • It is NOT a superhero approach. We do not want you to jump in and confront them if the situation is unsafe
  • There are many ways that you can Be More Than a Bystander while still keeping yourself safe

 Non-verbal interventions

  • Refuse to join in with sexist, racist, homophobic “jokes”
  • Offer your presence, as a way of supporting the person who the behaviour is directed towards
  • Remember: if there’s a threat of immediate danger, you should call 911 or call someone else for help. It’s still a way of Being More Than a Bystander, and will help keep everyone safe

 Verbal interventions – if you DON’T know them

  • Intervene by creating a distraction. If you witness a person being harassed/abused, you could ask the perpetrator for the time or directions, or ask a question about a job task
  • Vocalize your support as intervention. If a person is being harassed/abused in a group, say something in support, like: “Hey man, leave them alone” or “I don’t like how you are treating them, stop it”
  • Discourage others from participating
  • Say something like: “your words/actions are uncalled for, what you’re saying/doing is wrong”
  • Get other bystanders to join you in voicing disapproval. Remember—by being silent, you’re saying that this action/behaviour/attitude/word is alright with you

Verbal interventions – if you DO know them

  • It’s best to talk to the perpetrator when they’re alone, calm, and when you can speak openly (without being interrupted)
  • Tell them you are talking to them because you care about them, and are concerned about what’s happening
  • You can say something like, “something seems to be going on with you and I’m worried– can I help?”
    • Directly tell them what behaviour you are concerned about. (Make sure that they know that their actions/words are a kind of violence, and need to stop)
    • Don’t judge them, but also don’t validate any excuses or justifications they may have. (There is no justification or excuse for violence or abuse!)
  • Your goal here is to help them acknowledge that what they are doing is not acceptable, and to help them make sure it doesn’t happen again
  • You can say something like: “your actions/words make me afraid that you may seriously hurt someone if you don’t find a way to deal with your problems”
  • After you’ve addressed what they did or said, tell them some ways that they can get help with their abusive behavior. You could also suggest that they see a professional counsellor

Bystander Spokesmen Trained

Be More Than A Bystander

The 2017 research report, Enhancing the Retention and Advancement of Women in the Trades, found that the retention of women was significantly impacted by an unaddressed toxic culture of gender-based bullying and harassment in the industry. To initiate a culture shift, BCCWITT partnered with EVA BC to customize their Be More Than a Bystander program for the skilled trades industry.

The Be More Than a Bystander initiative originated as a partnership between the Ending Violence Association of BC (EVA BC) and the BC Lions Football Club (Lions) and has trained more than 100,000 people in British Columbia since 2011 on how to speak up and break the silence on violence against women.

A three-day intensive train-the-trainer program was created to develop male leaders and influencers in the industry as Be More Than a Bystander spokesmen. This model recognizes that most men care deeply about the women and girls in their lives and in the world, and engages those men to take ownership and play an active role in ending gender-based bullying, harassment and violence.

Are you a male leader/influencer in the skilled trades or related organization? 
Become a spokesman!  Bystander education is a key component to creating welcoming, inclusive, healthy and safe organizations. Spokesmen learn effective intervention strategies that they model in the organization and are tasked with sharing what they have learned with other men with a two-hour workshop.

Do you have a trained spokesman in your organization? You should! Best practice is for annual gender-based bullying and harassment education for managers, supervisors and workers, as well as incorporating bystander themes regularly into your tool box safety talks. Training spokesmen from your organization generates the internal capacity to achieve this in a low-cost and impactful way. Find out more by clicking on the “Spokesmen Train-the-Trainer” section.

“The BMTB training was phenomenal – I would describe it as life-changing great.”

Want a two-hour bystander workshop?

Are you an employer? Contractor? Union? Trades training provider? Other trades-related organization? Do you employ men? Are you unsure about committing to the train-the-trainer and want to know what this is all about?

If you answered YES to any of those questions, the Be More Than a Bystander workshop is designed for you.

This workshop has been very successful—97% of participants evaluated indicated that they were equipped with the skills to intervene in gender-based bullying, harassment and violence upon completion.

There is a growing number of industry spokesmen available to facilitate a workshop for your organization—find out more by emailing

“The more people who have this training, the sooner we will see change.”

OUR PARTNERS in Be More Than A Bystander


Tradeswomen Network

Creating a network of supportive peers is essential to increase the retention & advancemen of women in trades.

The Shift for organizations

We support equitable recruitment, training and advancement practices to support the success of underrepresented people in trades careers.

Career Development

We provide supports, funding, training and employment matching in the skilled trades industry for eligible women.