Domestic Violence

How We Can Help

Planning for your Safety

If you are in an abusive situation, it is important that you have a plan for your safety and the safety of your children. Don’t ignore the problem—plan ahead and know what you will do if the abuse starts again. If you fear the abuse is about to happen, please keep the following in mind:

  • If you need to make a quick escape, know where to go and how to get there, any time of the day or night. Think this through now, before the abuse begins. Consider going to a local shelter or the home of a family member or friend. If that is not possible, try a public place such as a library, hospital, shopping center, police, or fire station.

  • If you believe that you are about to be assaulted, stay out of rooms where there are weapons such as guns or knives. Do not attempt to threaten the abuser with a weapon, as it may put you in an even more dangerous situation.

  • Keep a list of telephone numbers of family, friends, doctors, etc.

  • Teach your children how to call the police and the fire department.

  • Gather important documents such as birth certificates, social security numbers, copies of any protective orders, marriage license, insurance information, children’s school records, medical records, bank account information, or any other information you feel is necessary should you need to leave quickly.

  • Set aside emergency money and hide an extra set of car keys.

  • Keep an extra set of clothes and shoes for you and your children with a trusted friend or neighbor.

  • Work out signals with your neighbors to alert them to call the police.

  • Build a support system for yourself and your children—talk to someone you think will listen—family, friends, religious leaders, counselors, or other members of your community.

  • Trust your instincts; if you think a violent episode is going to occur, leave before the abuse starts.