Things to Think About When Leaving
Women who live with violence need to have a safety plan. This plan will help them get out of the house in case of violence. Most women think that the abuse will not go that far, but the experience of many women is that it gets worse and worse.
If you are thinking about leaving an abusive relationship there are things you can do:
- Make a safety plan (read more below)
- Save money in secret when you can
- Get support from family, friends, and people you trust
- Keep extra keys and clothes with friends
The end of an abusive relationship can be the most dangerous time. The abuser sees they are losing control and power and may react violently. If possible go when he is gone and don’t tell him you are leaving.
What is a Safety Plan?
Women experiencing violence should have a safety plan for getting out of the house in an emergency
- Plan for a safe place to stay like a friends house, a shelter, or with family.
- Plan for transportation to leave. Ask the workers at the nearest shelter ahead of time if they will pay for a taxi in case you have to leave home suddenly. Most shelters use a particular taxi company and provide transportation if you live within the area. Keep the taxi company phone number in a safe place. Ask a friend or someone you trust if you can phone her or him in an emergency.
- Take important documents that you need to have with you. Copy and collect all important documents and keep them in a safe place:
- Alberta Health Care and Social Insurance Cards
- Credit cards, bank card, and chequebook
- Personal identification including driver’s license/registration, birth certificate, and treaty status card (if applicable)
- Immunization card for the children
- Custody order
- Last banking statement
- Mortgage papers
- Take personal items for you and your children such as:
- Money (if possible)
- Personal hygiene products
- Glasses/contact lenses
- Soother, bottles, special blankets, and toys
- Clothing (night wear, underwear)
- Heirlooms, jewelry, photo albums with picture you want to keep