24-hour Crisis Helpline
314.531.2003

Making a Safety Plan

Safety Planning for Abused Women

Though you do not have control over your partner’s violence, you do have a choice about how to get yourself and your children to safety. Leaving must be done with a careful plan. Abusers often become more violent when they believe their partner is leaving the relationship.

Safety During a Violent Incident

  • Practice getting out safely. What doors, windows, elevators, stairwells, or fire escapes would you use?
  • Keep your purse and car key where you can get to them in order to leave quickly.
  • Tell neighbors about the violence and ask that they call the police if they hear suspicious noises coming from your home.
  • Teach your children to use the phone to contact the police and fire department.
  • When you anticipate an argument, avoid the bathroom, garage, kitchen and other areas near weapons or rooms without access to an outside door.

Safety when preparing to leave:

  • Keep copies of important documents, keys, extra clothes and money with a friend or family member.
  • Keep our crisis line number – 314.531.2003 – with you or memorize it.
  • Check with friends or family members to see who would be able to let you stay with them or lend you money.
  • Rehearse your escape plan and, if appropriate, practice it with your children

Items to Take When Leaving

  • Identification for yourself
  • Your birth certificate
  • School and vaccination records
  • Credit cards
  • Medications
  • Insurance papers
  • Keys – house, car, office
  • Work permits/green card
  • Children’s birth certificates
  • Social Security cards
  • ATM card, checkbook
  • Bank books
  • Children’s favorite toy/blanket
  • Lease/house deed
  • Welfare identification

To receive a copy of the entire Safety Planning Guide, call AWARE at Barnes-Jewish Hospital at 314.362.9273.