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What is Domestic Abuse

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What is Domestic Abuse

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What is Domestic Abuse

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What is Domestic Abuse

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I’m being abused, what shall I do?

Recognising that you are being abused is an important step. You may feel you need time to think about the situation. Or perhaps you have already made up your mind to leave? Whatever you decide your safety is always the priority.
If you are being abused it is important to remember:
  • you are not alone
  • domestic and sexual abuse is against the law
  • it is not your fault. You are not responsible for the abuser’s behaviour
  • there are things you can do to protect yourself
  • we are here to help you.

In emergencies call the police on 999

Keeping Yourself Safe

Please click on the links below for more information on keeping yourself safe.

  • Domestic Abuse Helpline 0800 027 1234
  • Rape Crisis – supporting sexual violence services nationally
  • Childline (NSPCC) – Help line for children and young people
  • The Hideout – For young survivors of domestic violence
  • Men’s Advice Line – For male victims of domestic and sexual violence
  • Broken Rainbow – For Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) victims of domestic and sexual violence.

Safety Planning

Below are some suggestion syou may want to consider in order to make yourself as safe as possible. Following these suggestions is not a guarantee of safety, but could help improve your safety. Remember, you know your abuser so only do what you think will help.

Always call 999 if you or your children are in danger.

If you are still in an abusive relationship:

  • Plan an escape route from every room in your home
  • Think of a safe area in your home to go to if an argument happens – stay away from rooms with no exits and hard surfaces where there are objects which can be used as weapons ie bathrooms, kitchen. if an argument happens, try to move to one of these safe areas.
  • Think about and make a list of safe people to contact, if possible memorise important phone numbers.
  • Speak to a trusted neighbour about your situation who will call the police if they hear a disturbance.
  • Keep money / change with you at all times – know where the nearest working phone box is.
  • Think about what you will say to your partner if they become violent. Use your judgement of the abuser to protect you and your children. You are in no way colluding with the abuser if you give them what they want in order to protect you and your children. Call the police as soon as it is safe to do so.
  • Know where to go and what to do in an emergency and have an alternative.
  • Teach your children what to do in an emergency - tell them to call 999 and be able to give the address but not to get involved – they should never use a phone in front of an abuser as this may endanger them.
  • Call 999 in the event of an emergency – think of alternative ways to keep safe if the police do not respond straight away.

Remember, you have the right to live without fear and violence.

You may also be able to do some of the following:

  • Keep a record of violent and controlling behaviour to support any future action you may take – civil or criminal.
  • Log incidents with the police, even if you do not want to press charges at present.
  • Seek legal advice – EAWA can give you numbers of Solicitors
  • Domestic Abuse Helpline Tel 0800 127 1234

If You Are Planning to Leave

You may not feel able to leave immediately, but can plan and be prepared for when an emergency does arise and you need to leave your home. Leaving is often the most dangerous time so plan leaving so you can increase your safety. You can:

  • Have any bruises or injuries recorded by a doctor for future use in any legal proceedings, rehousing procedures etc. You can also take a picture using a camera or mobile phone. EAWA can also do this for you.
  • Have a packed bag ready and keep it in a safe, secret place so you can leave quickly.
  • Keep important documents in a safe place, either hidden in your home or with friends/family (eg marriage/birth certificates, national insurance card, passport, driving licence etc) including items of sentimental value, so that they can be grabbed in a hurry.
  • Only tell people you trust where you will be. lie if you have to – this will protect you and them.

The following items will be useful but are not essential for you to take if you decide that you want to leave in a hurry. Remember we can always help you to get these items later and with police support:

  • ID – passports, birth certificate, marriage certificate, NI Number, driving licence etc
  • Money – bank and credit cards
  • Medical – prescribed medicines, prescriptions, medical cards, children’s medical records
  • Legal – injunctions, divorce papers, mortgage documents, tenancy agreements
  • Special items – photos, child’s favourite toy, house and car keys

Always try to take your children with you or make arrangements to leave them with someone safe.

Remember: If the last number you called was a refuge, taxi or place you are going to stay, dial another number – for example the speaking clock (dial 123)