Develop a plan with your children.
Arrange to have a place to go – a hotel, a friend or family member’s house, a shelter, or even a busy parking lot if you must sleep in your car.
Pack and hide an overnight bag with money, spare keys, paperwork, and other important items.
Talk to safe people in your life: a friend, family member, coworker or neighbor could help with your safety.
Open your own bank account to safely store money.
Get a P.O. box and safety deposit box unknown to the abuser.
Seek support from an advocate for more information.
During an incident:
Children should have a plan to get away safely.
Call the police for help (dial 911). If you can’t call, text 911
If you need to yell for help, do it. A neighbor might hear you and call the police
Get out if you can.
If you leave, bring your important items in your overnight bag.
Avoid rooms with sharp objects, hard surfaces, or only one exit, such as the kitchen and bathroom.
When you’ve decided to get out of an abusive situation, but stay in your home:
Change the locks.
Secure doors and windows.
Arrange to have someone stay with you.
Change your phone number, but keep copies of threatening or harassing messages.
Obtain an Order for Protection.
Document any stalking or harassing behavior by the abuser.
Call the police if the abuser won’t leave you alone.
Talk to trusted friends and family.
Let a trusted neighbor know the abuser is not supposed to come to your home.
At the workplace, school, and public places:
Inform your work, children’s daycare and schools.
Give copies of your Order for Protection to work, children’s daycare and schools.
Change your daily routine.
Plan ahead for unexpected contact with the abuser.
Document any contact from the abuser.
Checklist of Important Items:
These are the important items you should have with you when you decide to leave. Some of them can be kept somewhere other than at home. A person you trust could keep some of these items for you, or you could keep them at your workplace.
Clothes and toiletries for a few nights
Medications for you and your children
Credit card & bank account information
Passwords and PINs to accounts
Car and house keys
Identification – driver’s license, passports, etc.
Important paperwork and extra copies:
Birth certificates for you and your children
Social security cards for you and your children
Your work-related items
Tax returns for at least the past two years and other tax documents
Retirement plan documents
Divorce or other family law paperwork
Photos of valuable family assets to prove condition and existence (car, home)
Photos of apartment or rented home in case abuser damages it after you leave
Prescriptions for you and your children
Medical records for you and your children
Protection order or no-contact order
Police reports and case numbers
Other evidence of abuse
Important phone numbers:
Your local domestic violence agency
Any advocate you or your family has been working with
Your doctor’s office
Other emergency contacts
For your children:
Snacks & toys for comfort