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What can I do if I need help urgently?

Call the police

If you are in danger and need urgent help, call the police on 000. If you want information about accommodation in a women’s refuge, call DVConnect on 1800 811 811.

Make a safety plan

If you are worried about your safety or your children’s safety, you should consider making a safety plan to use in case you need to leave your home or a situation quickly. It is important not to let the person you are afraid of know your plans. You might find it useful to develop the safety plan with a domestic violence support worker. We have included phone numbers at the back of this booklet.

What goes in the safety plan?

  1. Talk with someone you trust (confidentially) about the abuse and identify who can support you when you feel particularly vulnerable.
  2. Decide who you will call if you feel threatened or in danger. Keep those phone numbers in a safe and handy place.
  3. Decide where you will go if you need a safe place. Think about whether you could stay with a friend or family member or go to a women’s shelter or crisis accommodation.
  4. Decide what arrangements you will make to ensure your children and pets are safe.
  5. Know the easiest escape routes from your home, including windows, doors and obstacles to avoid, for example, locked gates.
  6. Depending on the children’s ages, think about how you might help them to prepare for safety in ways that do not frighten them. Talk to a domestic violence support worker if you need ideas or support about talking to your children about this issue.
  7. Put some money in a safe place for taxi or bus fares for emergency transport to a safe place. Be careful using rideshare apps if your abuser has access to your account as this could show them where you have travelled to.
  8. Keep extra keys to your home and car in a place you can easily access if you need to leave quickly.
  9. Pack all the medications you or your children need or keep the prescriptions somewhere easy to access if you need to leave quickly.
  10. Know where all your important papers (eg passports, birth certificates, bank details, Medicare card, children’s health records, last tax return, last Centrelink summary, car registration and insurance) are in case you need to find them in a hurry.
  11. Consider keeping some clothes, medications, copies of important papers, keys and some money at a friend’s house or your workplace.
  12. If possible, practise travelling to the location you have chosen as a safe place.
  13. Remember phone and digital safety:
    • Use ‘private browsing’ or delete your internet browsing history regularly (if it is safe to do so and won’t escalate your abuser).
    • Change your passwords and passcodes, but only if safe to do so. If it isn’t safe, consider what information they may have in accessing your device or online accounts.
    • Delete or clear all phone call records to support services or support people from your device call history.
    • Review the privacy settings on all online accounts and be cautious in using any accounts shared with your abuser.
    • If your abuser has access to your bills, find out if your phone bill will show the phone numbers you have called. This varies between different phone providers.
    • Remember the redial number on your landline and mobile phone can be pressed to see what your last call was.
    • Get legal advice about separation and domestic violence orders (before you separate, if possible).
    • Consider talking to police even if you do not want to take out a domestic violence order, so they are aware of your circumstances.
    • Get medical attention and support for any injuries, particularly if your abuser has choked or attempted to strangle you.

Last updated 7 April 2021

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