No woman wants to be a victim, and yet the world can be a scary place sometimes, especially for women. As much as we want to ignore it, women are so often at risk, even in the United States where we consider ourselves so much safer than people in many other countries. FFL is devoted to empowering women. With that in mind, here are 5 steps that women can take to protect themselves from a variety of situations, whether that is robbery, assault, etc.

1) Education

One crucial element to all safety is being educated about your surroundings, potential threats, potential solutions, et cetera. One of the most common cases where this is necessary is in a new environment, whether that be a new college campus, a new city, or a new country.  The truth of the matter is that no two places are the same, especially in terms of crime and safety measures.  You should always educate yourself. Check out local crime reports to see if there is a trend in your area, certain streets that seem to be more dangerous, or certain times of day that seem to be more prone to seeing criminal activity. No education will be perfectly complete, but even little steps can go a long way when safety is concerned.

2) Self-defense classes

Whether you consider yourself petite, curvy, strong, or weak, all women can benefit from self-defense classes. The fact of the matter is that our bodies are much different than mens. When we are faced with male attackers, we need to know how to take control of the situation and defend ourselves. Check out local self-defense classes offered by nearby shelters, libraries, or martial arts studios. A little training can go a long way.  While we hope and pray you’ll never have to use what you learn, it is better to be safe than sorry.

3) Conceal carry

We are big proponents of the Second Amendment.  We truly believe that the best equalizer in a situation is the right to bear arms.  A smaller woman can easily regain control over an assailant if she has the ability to draw her weapon. I am not an advocate for violence.  I think that all gun-owners should be well-equipped and well-trained to handle the guns they tote, but the Second Amendment exists for a reason. If you are old enough to conceal carry, consider it. You have every right to carry a weapon if it makes you feel more safe in your own home or out in public.  Don’t let anyone tell you differently. There are multiple locations in every state where you can take a conceal carry class if you are interested in pursuing that.

READ: 10 Reasons Why You Should Consider a Concealed Carry Permit

4) Situational Awareness

Another key component to safety for all is situational awareness, or being aware of your surroundings at all times. Whether you are at your home, on the street, or at a bar, you should be aware of what is going on around you. If you ever notice an unsafe situation or feel uncomfortable, you should act on your gut instinct. You should also be aware of certain protocols to keep in mind during different situations.   No one wants to be stuck in a bad situation.  It is better to be aware and prepared than unaware and scared.

5) The Squad Plan/Grouping

This may seem like the most basic, well-know way for women to stay safe, but it is an important one. There IS safety in numbers. There is another component to The Squad Plan, as I’ve come to call it. You may be highly educated on your surroundings, be a black belt in karate, and conceal carry, but your friends might not. The Squad Plan is a safety measure that benefits everyone.  It also can expand the skills and education of one person to protect others in the ground.  All women should be aware of how to protect themselves.  Being in groups when possible will help build friendship and protect everyone equally. Think of it as a sort of “No Friend Left Behind Policy”

Aryssa D
FFL Cabinet Member