Plan for Safety

//Plan for Safety
Plan for Safety 2017-08-06T01:51:40+00:00

Safety Planning is an important part of working with somebody who has experienced domestic violence.

There is no safety plan where “one size fits all.” Everybody’s situation is different. Tailoring a safety plan to each individual’s situation is important. The following ideas are some basic steps that can help you to help a domestic violence survivor;

  • Practice how to get out of the house safely. Which door, elevators, stairwells or fire escapes can be used?
  • Decide where to go if you have to leave home.
  • Prepare an overnight bag. Keep it in a readily accessible place. In addition to clothes, include in it:
    • Money, checkbook, credit and debit cards, ATM cards
    • Driver’s license and registration, social security cards, birth certificates.
    • Public Aid cards, green card, passports, work permits.
    • Order of Protection, divorce papers.
    • Medications, medical and vaccination records.
    • Lease, rental agreement, house deed.
    • Keys to house, car, and work.
    • Insurance information.
    • Address book.
  • Leave a set of keys and copies of important documents with a neighbor or trusted friend in case you need to leave quickly and your bag is not accessible.
  • Tell a neighbor about the abuse and ask them to call the police if they hear any suspicious noises coming from the house.
  • Develop a code word with the children and friends to signal them to call the police.
  • Teach these strategies to the children.


  • Move to a room that is lowest risk with easy access to an exit. Stay away from enclosed spaces near any weapons, such as the bathroom, kitchen or garage.
  • Get away. Go to a friend’s or relative’s house.
  • Call 911. They are required to provide or arrange transportation to a hospital or safe place for you.
  • Call for help. Scream loudly and continuously.


  • Get medical attention immediately. Tell the doctor or nurse what happened. Ask them to take pictures of your injuries.
  • Make a police report, even if you don’t want the abuser to be arrested. It will be a record of the incident and will provide evidence if you ever need it. The abuser will not be notified that you made the report.
  • Save evidence, including medical records, police reports, dated photos of your injuries or the house in disarray, torn clothing and any weapons used.
  • Call Family Shelter Service’s 24 hour hotline at 630-469-5650 for support and services.