There are ways you can keep safe from domestic abuse in different scenarios.
In an emergency
In an emergency, if you are being abused or attacked:
- call 999 immediately to alert police
- look for safe areas, avoid small enclosed spaces such as bathrooms and avoid areas that may have weapons such as kitchens
- go to a safe room with a door or window, should you need to leave
- if possible, remove yourself from the house.
Have a safety plan:
- have a list of phone numbers of people and organisations who can help you, keep this in a safe place for when you are ready or need it
- carry a mobile phone or make sure you know where you can make phone calls from, in safety
- if you find yourself with no money you can contact friends and family in an emergency by using a reverse charge call, please call the inland operator on 100 or the international operator on 155 (other companies are available)
- have your own set of keys for your house or car
- keep these and your money in a safe place so that you can get to it quickly if you need to leave in a hurry
- plan in advance where you would go and what you would need to take if you had to leave (this includes things like birth certificates, school and medical records, money, driving documents, cheque book, passport, clothing and children's toys) this will simplify you accessing services or welfare assistance should you need to
- make sure these are in a safe place where you can get to them quickly
- contact support organisations for advice about where to go
- if you are planning to leave, it is best to avoid confrontation so leave when your partner is not there.
Advice if you live alone or not with your abuser
If you live alone or not with the person who is abusing you:
- change the locks and install window locks
- get advice from your local police
- use an answering machine or call blocker to screen your calls
- consider changing your phone numbers and email addresses
- you may want to close any social networking accounts that your abuser has been aware of
- inform neighbours of the situation so that they can contact the police if they see or hear anything unusual.
Other steps you can take:
- inform someone you trust at work about your situation
- plan differing routes home from work and avoid routines
- make sure no one passes on your new details if you had to move or change phone number.