Planning For Safety



We do not know your situation, or what options you have, or how much danger you are in.  You do know. 

The purpose of this information is to help you focus on what you know and what you need. 

The suggestions listed are to help you plan in advance of potentially dangerous situations. 

picture of an elderly woman looking worried


Take extra precautions when weapons are present in the home.


Safety during an Explosive Event

Safety when Preparing to Leave

If an argument seems unavoidable, try to have it in a room or area that has access to an exit and not in a bathroom, kitchen or anywhere near weapons.

Try to stay in a room with a phone so you can call 9-l-l, the police, a friend or a neighbor.

Practice how to get out of your home safely. Identify which doors, windows, elevator or stairwell could be best.

Have a packed bag ready and keep it in an undisclosed but accessible place in order to leave quickly.

Identify a neighbor you can tell about the violence and ask that they call the police if they hear a disturbance coming from your home.

Devise a code word to use with your children, grandchildren, family, friends and neighbors when you need the police.

Decide and plan for where you will go, and how you will get there, if you have to leave home (even if you don't think you will need to).

Use your own instincts and judgment. If the situation is dangerous, consider giving the abuser what he wants to calm him down. You have the right to protect yourself until you are out of danger.

Immediately report to police all violations of the Order of Protection.


Increase your Independence: Open a savings account in your own name to start to establish or increase your independence.  Think of other ways in which you can increase your independence.


Leave important things with someone you trust: Leave money, an extra set of keys, copies of important documents and extra clothes with someone you trust so you can leave quickly.


Things to bring: Bring any medications, prescriptions, and glasses, hearing aids or other assistive devices you may need.


Determine who would be able to let you stay with them or lend you some money.


Have phone information: Keep the shelter phone number close at hand and keep some change or a calling card on you at all times for emergency phone calls.


Contact the Helpline: If you are 60 years or older, contact the Helpline at 866-684-5885 to learn about eligibility for public and private benefits and services such as Social Security, pensions, housing, transportation and medical insurance.


Review your safety plan as often as possible in order to plan the safest way to leave your abuser.




Click here for a checklist on what to take when you leave


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