This page is for support workers who are supporting a client that may be in an abusive situation. Please print the information if you prefer a paper copy or would like to have the material available to distribute to your clients.
Visit the Just the Facts page for printable summaries on topics related to relationship violence and partner abuse.
Things to Consider When Talking About Abuse with Your Clients
If you have a client who you think is in an abusive relationship, there are things you as a service provider can do to support them.
- Understand the client may not want to end the relationship. Help them plan ways to stay safe. Be supportive of their decisions, even if you disagree with them. Don’t pressure them, but create space for them to change their mind.
- Don’t judge. If a survivor feels like they are being judged for staying in the relationship, they will be less likely to disclose abuse the next time it happens.
- Offer options. People who are in abusive situations have had power and control taken away from them. Help them understand the options available and make decisions that are right for them.
- Offer support in other ways. Is your client having trouble finding employment? Housing? Childcare? Helping your client get other areas of their life going smoothly can help make it possible for them to leave the relationship.
- Connect them with information and resources in their community.
Residential Tenancies and Domestic Violence in Alberta
In August 2016, the Residential Tenancies (Safer Spaces for Victims of Domestic Violence) Amendment Act, Termination of Tenancy (Domestic Violence) Regulation, and amendments to the RTA Ministerial Regulation, were proclaimed. These changes to the RTA allow victims of domestic violence to end a tenancy early and without financial penalty. This legislation applies in cases where if the tenancy continues: • The tenant’s safety is at risk; • A dependant child’s safety is at risk; or • A protected adult’s safety is at risk. Click here for more information on the Residential Tenancies (Safer Spaces for Victims of Domestic Violence) Amendment Act.
- Families and the Law: Domestic Violence Series
- Domestic Violence Toolkit for Landlords
- Legal Information for Intermediaries and Service Providers
These guides were developed for front-line service providers and intermediaries in Alberta to assist them in their work with vulnerable individuals.