"Safe Bar" program trains Nashville hospitality professionals on sexual assault prevention

Safe Bar program trains hospitality professionals on sexual assault prevention
Posted at 10:36 PM, Feb 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-06 23:36:19-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — As crowds gather at area bars and restaurants Sunday for the Super Bowl, it can also set the scene for a dangerous situation.

According to the Sexual Assault Center of Middle Tennessee, reports of sexual violence, domestic violence, and human trafficking tend to increase during big event weekends like the Super Bowl.

When Nashville hosted the 2019 NFL Draft the center received triple the number of reported sexual assault cases than usual. That's why the center offers the "Safe Bar" program- a by-stander intervention program for venues where alcohol is served.

"It could be that you see something uncomfortable happening or you see somebody who appears uncomfortable- just knowing how to distract, how to seek help, how to call a cab, how to get another person to support in having a conversation that could be intervening," said President and CEO of the Center, Rachel Freeman.

The program offers tips for employees to recognize potentially dangerous situations, like if a customer requests an "angel shot" - it's a signal for help. The program also utilizes coasters which can detect if a drink has been drugged.

The center has set a goal of training 100 bars in 2021.