Before a violent incident, think about:
- Asking two people near your home to call the police if they hear a disturbance. You can also devise a code word or sign to let family or friends know they need to call the police.
- Opening a separate savings account.
- Leaving money, extra keys, copies of important documents and extra clothes with someone you trust.
- Deciding where you would go in an emergency, even if you don’t plan to leave.
- Identifying the safest and quickest ways to get out of your house. Practice escape routes.
- Having important phone numbers nearby for you and your children, such as numbers for police, hotlines, friends and the local shelter.
- Teaching children to dial 911.
- Packing a bag and keeping it in a private, but easily accessible place.
- Practicing your safety plan as often as possible.
If you leave, take the following items:
- Cash, checkbooks, credit cards, etc.
- Driver’s license, social security card, passport, etc.
- Important documents, such as birth certificates, rental agreements or insurance papers
- House, car and work keys
- Order of protection, if you have one
During a Violent Incident, try to:
- Use your judgment and intuition. If you are in a very dangerous situation, it may be better to give the abuser what he wants to calm him down.
- Identify safe rooms near exits.
- Stay away from bathrooms, kitchens or anywhere with weapons.
- Call for help. Scream loudly and continuously.
- Call 911. The police are required to provide necessary transportation to a safe place and can help prevent further abuse.
- Get out safely. There are times when taking your children with you may put all of your lives in danger. You need to protect yourself to be able to protect your children.
After a violent incident, try to:
- Get medical attention immediately. Ask doctors or nurses to take pictures of your injuries.
- Make a police report. Even if you don’t want the abuser arrested, the report will become evidence of past abuse. The police do not notify the abuser if you make a report, unless they need to make an arrest based on visible physical injury to you.
- Save evidence.You may want to take legal action later.
- Medical reports
- Police reports
- Dated photos of injuries
- Dated photos of the house in disarray, torn clothing and weapons used
- Statements from witnesses
- File an order of protection. Call Turning Point to learn more about orders of protection and get help with legal actions.