It is important for a woman living in an abusive relationship to create a safety plan for herself and her children. A safety plan should be developed whether the woman plans to stay in the relationship or leave. A safety plan is a plan of action that a woman and her children can follow should abuse or violence occur.
If you are an abused woman and are planning to leave:
- Don’t tell your partner you are leaving.
- Take your children with you when you leave and bring favourite items or toys.
- Plan an emergency exit.
- Keep money in a safe place for taxi, pay phones, and phone cards.
- Keep emergency phone numbers with you.
- Make sure you have valuable documents (passports, birth certificates, marriage certificates, immigration papers, OHIP cards, SIN cards, bank books, and bank cards).
- Bring documents that prove you have been living at the same address as your partner.
- Take any prescription medication with you.
- Try to open a bank account in your name only or in the name of someone you trust before you leave and save as much money as you can. Arrange to have the bank statements sent to a safe address.
- Keep extra clothing, house and car keys, money, copies or originals of important papers, and significant phone numbers at a safe location. If you can, have an emergency suitcase packed and ready to go.