Domestic Violence Safety Plan
dangerous time for a woman is when she leaves an abuser. Working out a
plan ahead of time will help increase her chances of survival.
Most of us
are familiar with a plan to get out of the house in case of fire. A
domestic violence plan is the same. It’s a tool a survivor can use to
think about how she will get out of her home or workplace when
threatened. It should cover what she will need to do afterwards and what
essentials she will need.
with children face special hurdles. They will have to decide how much to
tell children based on age and appropriateness. Young children may blurt
it out and older kids can be coerced or bribed to tell by the abuser.
A survivor of
domestic violence will need to think ahead and plan for a safe place to
go. They will also need a back-up plan. A domestic violence shelter is
often the best choice. If the shelter is full or otherwise unavailable
she will need a backup plan.
It is never a good idea to go to “Mom’s”, or the home of a close friend
or relative. These are the first places a batterer may think to look.
Similarly, rule out close motels.
There may be
a place out of town or away that she could go for safety. The local
agency may have some ideas or be able to make a referral. The victim
will need to think of a plan “B” and also plan how she will get there.
is a list of some of the essentials a survivor will need after leaving.
It is best to think about how to get these ready ahead of time. The
items need to be kept safely hidden and away from the abuser.
survivor may need:
Driver’s License, Green Card etc.
Keys, House Keys
Certificate for herself and children
Social Security Cards for herself and children
Checkbook, ATM Cards, Bank Information
or Rental Agreement
Personal Care Items
Childcare Items – formula, diapers, blankets, special toys
Stamps, Medicaid Card
100%. A well thought out, practiced plan can tell the children where to
go and what to do during an escalation and hopefully provide for their
safety while increasing the safety for the victim.