Safety Measures While You Are Still in an Abusive Relationship
- Memorize important numbers of friends and relatives whom you can call who can help you in an emergency. If your children are old enough, teach them important numbers, as well as how to dial 911.
- Keep all information in a safe place, where your partner can’t find it, but where you can get to it and read it when needed.
- Keep change for pay phones with you at all times. If you have a cell phone, keep it charged.
- If possible open your own bank account.
- Stay in touch with your friends. Get to know your neighbors. Resist temptation to isolate yourself from other people, even if you feel like you just want to be alone.
- Rehearse your escape plan.
- At a safe location that you can access later, leave a set of car keys, extra money, a change of clothes and copies of the following documents:
- You and your children’s birth certificates
- Your children’s school and medical records
- Your bank records
- Welfare identification
- Passports or green cards
- Your social security card
- Lease agreements/mortgage payment books
- Important addresses and telephone numbers
- Insurance cards/papers
- Any other important documents
Safety After You Have Left the Relationship
- Change the locks if you are still in the home and the batterer is the one who has left.
- Install as many security features as possible in your home. These might include metal doors and gates, security alarm systems, smoke detectors, and outside lights.
- Inform neighbors that your former partner is not welcome on the premises. Ask them to call the police if they see the person around the property.
- Make sure the people who care for your children are very clear about who does/does not have permission to pick up your children.
- Obtain a restraining order. Keep it with you at all times.
- Let your co-workers know about the situation, especially if your former partner is likely to come to your work place to bother you.
- Avoid the stores, banks, and businesses you used when you were living with the batterer.
- Get counseling. Attend workshops. Join support groups. Do whatever it takes to form a supportive network that will be there when you need it.
How victims can assist when police respond to a domestic violence call
- Try to stay calm.
- Describe the incident in detail.
- Show the police any injuries, bruises, or damaged property.
- Inform the officers of any witnesses.
- Tell the officers about other violent incidents.
- Show the officers any court documents you have, such as a No-Contact Order, Protectiion Order, or a Stalking or Sexual Assault Protection Order.
- Ask the officers for community resources such as shelters, hotlines, counseling and advocacy.
- Ask the officers for the case number of the report and a phone number if you want to follow up on the case
You can call AWAIC’s crisis line, 907-272-0100, 24-hours a day to speak with a trained advocate.