Phones are key.
1. Keep your phone charged and on you at all times.
In this day and age, our phones are literally lifelines and are essential to keeping in touch with family, friends and the authorities. Use that lifeline — phone a friend and keep in contact with someone, while still maintaining awareness of your surroundings.
2. Do not hesitate to call 911 if you feel you’re in danger.
Don’t be afraid to be extra cautious. If you end up being wrong — know there are people in this world who wouldn’t think twice about calling 911 on you for simply walking past them and “looking Middle Eastern.”
3. Use your camera.
If a car or person is following you or someone near you, try to take a picture discreetly. In the case of a hit and run, you’ll have evidence to catch the perpetrator and get justice.
4. Tell people where you’re going beforehand.
Just going to school? Text someone. Going for dinner or a meeting across town? Text multiple people of when you leave and when you arrive to and from the location to home. It sounds ridiculous. But remember that even though you might feel okay walking to the end of your driveway, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Apps you can download to help ensure your safety:
- Kitestring: A safecall app designed to alert friends and family with a timer for how long you’ll be gone. Once the timer runs out and you don’t check in with the app, it immediately texts your loved ones to check up on you.
- bSafe: An app to alert your “guardians” with one button. It calls and texts them to let them know you’re in danger. The app also has the option of a fake incoming call, if in a distress situation.
- Circle of 6: Lets six of your friends know if you are in a dangerous situation.
- ACLU’s Mobile Justice: Details your rights, records cops and sends videos immediately to the American Civil Liberties Union.
- Self Evident: A U.K.-based app for London residents to report hate crimes. According to the description, it “records, validates and secures evidence. It lets you file a report for work, notify an adviser or business of a claim, report a crime to the police, send the media a news story or just secure evidence in your private account.”