Safety Strategies for Victims of Abuse
There are steps you can take for your safety
If you are in or have left an abusive relationship, follow the strategies below to increase your safety. UCF Victim Services is here to help you create your own safety plan which best suits your unique situation.
I’m in an abusive relationship:
- Identify the safest place in your home to go if an argument occurs. Avoid rooms with no exits (bathrooms), or rooms with weapons (the kitchen).
- Keep a list of safe people to contact in a hidden, but easy to find location. If necessary, memorize important numbers.
- Call the Florida Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-500-1119 to get help.
- Keep your cell phone charged at all times.
- Establish a “code word” so that family, friends, teachers or co-workers know to call for help.
- Plan how you will respond to your partner if he/she becomes violent.
- Have a set of clothes and sets of important documents (savings account records, check books, safety deposit keys, birth certificates, school records, deeds, other legal documents) for yourself and for your children stored at a friend’s house or at work in the event you need to flee your house.
- Take pictures of physical injuries resulting from the abuse as soon as possible.
- If you have children, practice emergency drills with them.
- Teach your children how to dial 911.
- If you have a protective order or restraining order, carry it with you at all times. Make extra copies.
- Trust your own judgment and intuition. You may choose to give your partner they order to temporarily de-escalate the situation. You have the right to protect yourself however you see fit.
- Remember you have the right to live without fear and violence.
I’ve left an abusive relationship:
- Change your phone number.
- Screen calls and put a block on your number so that you can’t be identified.
- Save and document all contacts, messages, injuries or other incidents involving the abuser.
- Change locks if the abuser has a key.
- Avoid staying alone.
- Plan how to get away if confronted by an abusive partner.
- If you have to meet your partner, do it in a public place.
- Vary your routine.
- Notify school and work contacts.
- Get help from UCF’s on and off-campus resources