You Have a Right to be Safe!
If you are being hurt by someone you love, make plans and take precautions to keep yourself and your children safe. Here are some suggestions that have helped other people in situations like yours.
- If there’s an argument, try to be in a place with an exit, and not in a room that contains weapons.
- Practice getting out of your home safely. Identify which doors, windows, elevators, and stairs to use.
- Pack a bag and leave it with a friend or relative.
- Know that 81% of men who batter women had fathers who battered their mothers.
- Find one or two neighbors you can tell about the violence and ask them to call the police if they hear a disturbance coming from your home.
- Choose a code word to use with your children, friends, and neighbors when you need the police.
- Make a plan of where you will go if you ever need to leave home.
- Use your instincts and best judgement. In some dangerous situations, give the abuser what they want to calm them down.
- Open your own checking or savings account.
- Leave money, an extra set of keys, copies of important documents, clothing, and medicines in a safe place or with someone you trust.
- Get your own post office box.
- Keep the Crisis Line number handy.
- Turn off your cell phone and remove the battery.
- Get a temporary phone or check with a safe house to see if they have one you can use.
- If you or your children have been threatened or assaulted, you can request a protective order from the District Attorney’s office.
- Keep your protective order with you at all times.
- Call the police immediately if your abuser violates the protective order.
- Inform family members, friends, and neighbors that you have a protective order.
- Have a plan for alternate ways to keep safe if the police do not respond immediately.
- If you stay in your home, change the locks on your doors as soon as possible. Keep windows and doors locked at all times.
- Develop a safety plan with your children for times when you are not home with them.
- Tell your children’s schools, day care, etc. the names of those who have permission to pick up your children.
- Inform your neighbors, family, and landlord that your partner does not live with you. Ask them to call the police if they see this person near your home.
- Be careful using social media, as it could be used to track your location.
- Inform someone at work about your situation. If possible, include the security officer and/or human resource manager. Provide them with a picture of your abuser.
- Have someone screen your phone calls at work.
- Have someone escort you to your car, bus, or train.
- Vary your route to and from work, shopping, and schools.