Here are some ways to make your safety plan:
- Talk with friends, family, neighbors and coworkers. Let them know what’s happening and talk about ways they might be able to help.
What can you do to increase safety during an argument or if you can tell abuse is coming? For example, some rooms in your home may be safer than others. Some survivors try to move away from the kitchen because it has knives and other many sharp objects. Some survivors try to stay close to a door, so they could run if they needed to.
Memorize the numbers you would to use in an emergency, like 911, a friend’s or family member’s number, or New Beginnings’ 24 Hour Helpline: 206-522-9472. Your partner could take your cell phone from you, so memorizing numbers or keeping a list of numbers somewhere safe can help.
- Plan how you would escape if you needed to. If you live in an apartment building, make sure you know all the ways out of the building. What routes can you take to get to transportation, and where can you go to get to safety? You could learn how to get to a local police station, fire department, hospital emergency room, or 24 hour store. You might want to identify a route that is different from your usual one, and plan to use that in an emergency.
- Talk with your children about safety. Some survivors teach their children how to call 911, or talk with them about a neighbor’s home or place in the community that may be a safe place to go in an emergency.
- Make a plan for times when you are at work. You may want to speak with your employer about changing work locations or hours, or alerting security or reception staff to your situation.
Prepare an emergency bag. Put together a bag that includes money, copies of house and car keys, medicine, and copies of important papers such as birth certificates, social security cards, immigration documents, court orders, and health insurance information. The bag can also include extra clothes, important phone numbers, or other things you need if you have to leave your home in a hurry. If you prepare an emergency bag, you may be able to keep it at a trusted friend’s or family member’s home.
If you have decided to prepare an emergency bag, and have a place in mind where you can safely keep it, here is a checklist to help you decide what to put in the bag.
Order of Protection
Public Assistance ID
Mobile phone/coins to use in a payphone
Driver's license & registration
Social security card
Your partner’s social security number
Important legal documents
Record of violence
Baby’s things (diapers, formula, medication)
Children’s school and immunization records
Non-perishable snacks for you and your children (like juice and crackers)
Important phone numbers including New Beginnings’ 24 Hour Helpline: 206-522-9472.