HSD FAC Safety Plan

A SAFETY PLAN is created by a domestic violence victim or survivor, often with the help of an advocate, that considers options for leaving an abusive partner or creates an action plan for a victim in the event of another incident.

Download SAFETY PLAN


See below for a list of safety tips you can utilize in various settings and circumstances:

HOME SAFETY TIPS -

  • Have a safety bag ready with important items needed for a few days.  Preferred items include, clothing (shirts, pants, underwear, bras/undershirts, pajamas, etc.), diapers/pull ups, blankets, a couple of toys for young children, immunization records for children, driver’s licenses or state identification cards for adults, Social Security cards and birth certificates for all family members, passports and/or work visa, cell phone and charger, medications.
  • Teach your children to dial 911.
  • Teach your children a code word that alerts him/her to get help and report to a safe zone (a place unknown to the abuser), such as the house of a nearby neighbor or family member.
  • Do not run where the children are located because your partner may hurt them as well.
  • Identify a neighbor you can talk to about the violence.  Ask them to call the police if they hear a disturbance from your home.
  • Avoid areas in the home that can be dangerous, especially if they limit access out of the house and have potential weapons.  Areas include: kitchen (knives, sharp objects, hard surfaces, glass), bathroom (razors, pills, hard surfaces, water, no alternate exit), bedroom (only one way in and one way out, hard surfaces, sharp corners).
  • Change home locks, alarm codes, garage door openers and add peepholes in the doors.
  • Have an escape route prepared in order to arrive at a safe place.  A safe place is defined as a location, which your abuser does not know the location or the person/people with whom you are staying.  Such as, a domestic violence shelter, a relative or friends that the abuser does not know.
  • Keep weapons like guns and knives locked up or hidden from the abuser.
  • Do not open the door to strangers.
  • Add a home alarm system.
  • If violence cannot be avoided, make yourself into a small target, by diving into a corner and curling up into a ball.  Protect your face and wrap your arms around each side of your head, with your hands and fingers locked together. This is known as a duck and cover position.

WORK SAFETY -

  • If you have an Order of Protection or an Injunction Against Harassment, give a copy to your employer.
  • Change your work hours, work phone number, or work location.
  • Notify a third party of your work schedule.
  • Report to work security.
  • Notify your personnel office and/or security staff.
  • Tell trusted people at work about the situation and have your calls screened by the receptionist.
  • Obtain an escort to and from your work entrance.

COMPUTER SAFETY -

  • Delete and block friends, known to both you and the abuser, from online social websites such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace.
  • Avoid registering with online dating sites.
  • Notify friends and family about the abuser.  
  • Tell them not to accept friend requests or respond to messages or questions from the abuser.
  • Do not accept ‘friend requests’ from people you do not know on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, or any other website.
  • Delete e-mail accounts you may have and set up new accounts.
  • Change passwords to your e-mail accounts and online social accounts.
  • Do not post your whereabouts or plans online.
  • Consider deleting old social networks accounts.
  • Limit information you post online.  
  • Be careful not to include your home address,work address, your date-of-birth, etc.
  • Create an e-mail account, the abuser is not aware of, to relay important. information to family, friends, and social service agencies. 

PROTECTIVE ORDER -

  • Call 911 or Crime Stop non-emergency at (602) 262-6151 to report violations.
  • Document details of violations (where, when, report number, witnesses, time, names of officers/detectives, specifics of violation).
  • Supply copies of the protective order to school, work daycare, landlord, neighbors.  MOST IMPORTANTLY, keep a copy of the protective order and Affidavit of Service with you at all times.
  • Update the court with your new phone number and address.
  • Include a photo of the perpetrator with each copy of the protective order.
  • If the order has not been served, keep a copy of the protective order and the Affidavit of Service with you at all times, ready for service.


PHONE SAFETY - 

  • If possible, have a phone accessible at all times.
  • Program 911 on speed dial. 
  • Contact the service carrier and ask them to disable the GPS tracking devise on the phone.
  • Power off or discontinue usage of your phone, if traceable.
  • Avoid using any phone that is in the abuser's name, as anyone on the account can request a call history report.
  • Change your phone number.
  • Add the 'block call' feature to your phone to prevent your phone number from being displayed on the phone of the person you are contacting.
  • Screen calls by sending unknown calls to voicemail.
  • Change your voicemail passcode.
  • Program your cell phone to lock access when not in use.
  • Do not disclose private information to people you meet on a phone or chat-line.
  • Record and save any messages left by the perpetrator.
  • Back your phone numbers to a memory card or your online provider.
  • Make a hardcopy list of your important contact numbers.


SAFE EXIT PLAN-

  • Forward your mail to an address unknown to the abuser.  Such as, friends, family or a PO Box.
  • Make a habit of backing the car into the garage and keeping it fueled.  Keep the driver's door unlocked and the other doors locked for a quick escape.
  • Reschedule all appointments that are known to the abuser.
  • Create a bank account or save money in a remote site, unknown to the abuser.
  • Order duplicate ID's and important documents and have them mailed to an alternate address or transfer those onto an electronic storage device, such as a thumb drive.
  • Leave when it is least expected.  For example, during times of agreement and calm.
  • Create several reasons for leaving the house, at different times of the day or night.
  • Plan for what you will do if your partner discovers your exit plan.
  • If the abuser monitors your belongings, be sure to always have them placed back where they were.
  • Create a false trail.  Call motels, real estate agencies and schools that are at least six hours away from where you plan to relocate.  Ask questions, that require a call back to your house, in order to have those phone numbers on record for the abuser to hear.
  • Memorize important phone numbers or toll-free numbers, such as the shelter hotline, a domestic violence hotline and a trusted friend or family member.
  • Have 'safety bag' with important items in a location unknown to the abuser.  Store items, such as the following: cash, clothes, duplicate identification, birth certificates, Social Security cards, medical cards, extra set of keys, bus passes, phone/charger, contact phone numbers, change for calls/laundry, court documents, mortgage/lease documents, medication, necessary baby items, sentimental valuables, journal of abuse.
  • Make plans for pets.  Never let a pet keep you from exiting an abusive relationship.


GENERAL SAFETY-

  • Keep your new location confidential.
  • Avoid contact with mutual friends.
  • Report daily whereabouts and check in with friends and family that are not mutual acquaintances.
  • Avoid area the perpetrator frequently visits.
  • Try not to wear scarves or long-jewelry that could be used to strangle you.
  • If you were injured, go to the doctor or an emergency room and report what happened to you.  Ask that they document your injuries.
  • Be careful to whom you give your new address and phone number.
  • Avoid isolation and do not be afraid to tell someone about the violence.
  • Shop at different stores and visit different social locations.