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Safety Planning

You may not be able to control the abuse that is being inflicted on you but you can take steps to protect yourself and anyone else who is affected – children for example.

Safety planning can help with this.

Be prepared for an emergency

Think about your options carefully and think about what you could do in an emergency situation.

  • Keep your phone charged, in credit and with you at all times
  • Store any useful numbers Safe2Speak, the Refuge and the police domestic violence unit into your phone but under other names. For example, the refuge could be in your phone under ‘hairdresser’
  • Consider changing your phone provider to a mobile network if you have issues with your signal
  • If you don’t have a mobile phone make sure you have change with you
  • Teach any children to call 999 in an emergency and what they need to say: their full name, address, telephone number
  • Are there people nearby you can trust where you can go in an emergency? Consider telling them about what’s happening and that you may need their help in an emergency situation e.g. phoning the Police.
  • Choose a safe place in the house you can go to call the police. Try to avoid places, like the bathroom or kitchen where there might be knives or razors. Consider locking kitchen cupboards, moving knifes to a different drawer or removing knife blocks from the counter top.
  • Ensure all the tools or things that could be used as weapons are locked up in the garage or tool shed.
  • Plan your escape routes so that in an emergency you can get away safely.
  • If you feel you are at risk of forced marriage contact 999 immediately.
  • If you feel it is safe to do so you could also contact the forced marriage unit- 020 7008 0151.
  • If you feel you are at risk of female genital mutilation (FGM) or cutting contact 999 immediately.
  • If you or someone you know is at risk of FGM or cutting you can contact the NSPCC anonymously on 0800 0283 550.
  • If you know a British national has been taken aboard to have female genital mutilation or cutting you should also contact to foreign and common wealth office on 020 7008 1500.

Everyday safety

There are certain things you can do to try and increase your safety.

  • If your abuser follows you, try to vary your routine, your journey to work and the times you work for example
  • Stay safe online – change your passwords regularly and remember to delete your browsing history
  • Carry a personal alarm
  • Make sure family, teachers and friends (not mutual) know what’s going on and agree a code word that alerts them to call the police. If you have a personal alarm you could signal for help by throwing it from a window too
  • Be honest about what’s happening to you, and how you are feeling, so you can get help and support
  • Keep and/or make copies of personal and important documents somewhere safe and accessible or with someone trusted.

Ways your Domestic Violence Advisor can help

Your Domestic Violence Advisor may be able to help with the following:

Home security

  • Getting your landlord to change your locks in an emergency
  • Arranging for the landlord to provide security lighting
  • Making doors more secure, fixing security chains
  • Fire proof letterboxes
  • A panic alarm from the police
  • Door braces
  • Personal safety alarms
  • A police marker on your property

Taking action to prevent abuse

Your Domestic Violence Advisor can help:

  • File non-molestation orders
  • File an occupation order so you can remain in your home
  • Organise a tenancy to be transferred to you
  • Help with child arrangement and contact orders

They can also advise on:

  • Restraining orders
  • Harassment protection
  • Domestic violence protection orders
  • Provide advice about the criminal justice system
  • Support for court
  • Forced marriage protection orders
  • Female genital mutilation protection orders
  • Claire’s Law

Planning to leave

If you are planning to leave, contact us for tailored safety advice and guidance on 01744 743200.

As well as safety planning, your domestic abuse adviser can provide help and support to move for your safety.

Support is also available to help you access refuge space if you are no longer safe at home and need to move immediately.

If it’s an emergency & you are in immediate risk or danger, contact 999.