Safety Advice

Safety Advice

Your safety is the most important thing

Increase your safety
If you are in an abusive relationship use the below tips to help keep you safe:

  • Plan in advance how you might respond in different situations
  • Know who you can contact in an emergency
  • Carry a list of emergency numbers, or learn them
  • Keep spare change with you at all times, for using the telephone and for transport
  • Tell someone you trust about your situation. Do you have neighbours that you can trust? If so, tell them what is going on, and ask them to call the police if they hear sounds of a violent attack.
  • Think of the ways you can get out of the house safely, if you need to
  • If you suspect that your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a lower risk area of the house (e.g. where there is a way out and access to a telephone. Avoid places where there are likely to be knives or other weapons (e.g. kitchen, garage, etc.); and avoid rooms where you might be trapped (e.g. bathroom)
  • Even if you have no plan to leave, think of where you could go, if you needed to. Think of how you might leave and where you could go where you would be safe
  • Go over your safety plan often

Your Children's Safety

Increase your children's safety by explaining that they should never get involved in an incident, even if they want to help.

  • Show them how to use the telephone to dial 999, ask for the police, and state their address; Make up a code word that you can use when you need help
  • Show them how to get out of the house safely
  • Tell them where they can go to ask for help


If you are considering leaving your abuser

Increase your safety, if you are considering leaving your abuser:

  • Think about a few places you could go if you leave your home
  • Think about people who can help you if you leave
  • Open a bank account or get a credit card in your name
  • Consider the ways how you might leave. Practice how you would leave.

It is important to think how you could take your children with you safely. Sometimes taking children might put all of your lives in danger. Remember you need to protect yourself to be able to protect your children.

Put together a bag of things that you use every day and hide it where it is easy for you to get to it. If you think your abuser might find it, it is better not to have a bag or leave it with a neighbour or at a friend's house.

Remember to take everything you will need with you, including any important documents (passport, bank/credit cards) relating to yourself and your children, as you may not be able to return later.

If you have left your abuser

Increase your safety if you have left your abuser;

  • Domestic violence is a crime.
  • It is against the law.
  • You're not alone.
  • One in four women are abused during their lifetime
  • The abuse is not your fault. You can't make a person hit you. Violence is a choice and only they are responsible.
  • You cannot try to change your partner. They must accept responsibility for their behaviour.
  • Abuse is hardly ever a one-off - it generally gets worse over time. Although abusive people can change, it is rare.
  • You don't have to deal with this on your own.

You can call the 24 Hour Domestic Violence Helpline which is run in partnership between Women's Aid and Refuge. Its open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
All calls are confidential. 0800 2000 247

If you are in danger, call 999. The police have a duty to investigate and charge.

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