What is it?
You may need a safety plan if you feel you are at risk of domestic and family abuse and violence. A safety plan is a series of steps that will help you avoid a dangerous situation. This plan will keep you and your children safe in an emergency. Seeing a potential threat of violence isn’t easy. But, it’s very important to be prepared in case things at home become unsafe. Remember, nobody deserves to live in fear.
What will my GP do now?
You have already spoken to your GP about domestic violence. This topic is hard to talk about, but you have done the right thing in starting the talk.
Your GP will now help you to:
- Develop your safety plan – and review it if things change or if you decide to leave home
- Give you extra support – together, you’ll discuss the option of being referred to a domestic violence support worker
What can I do?
After you decide on what to include in your safety plan, see your GP to talk it through. Keep your plan hidden in a safe place. Even if it is safe to go home now, it may not be in future. Remember, you may need to leave home at short notice.
If you ever don’t feel safe to go home, phone the Domestic Violence information line on 1800 65 64 63. You’ll speak to a counsellor who can help. This helpline is a 24-hour service. If you feel you are in danger, visit the nearest police station.
Helping your children
It’s very important you take the time to teach your children about the warning signs of danger.
- Keep the conversation practical – in the same way you’d teach your kids about fire safety
- Practice escape routes – talk about these at the same time as you talk about fire escapes
- Have an emergency contact – so your children know who to go to or call in an emergency
- Teach your kids how to call 000 – make sure they know their address and how to explain their situation
Internet safety steps
You may need to do one or more of these safety steps to protect your privacy.
- Change or delete all your social media accounts to protect your personal details
- Change your email accounts and use a different name and birthday when you register for a new account
- Get your computer checked for programs that can track your keystrokes
- Access the internet at the library or from a friend so your browsing habits can’t be traced
When should I call the police?
If you ever feel you are in danger, or if you or your children have been seriously injured, phone 000 immediately.