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Safety Plans help victims consider their choices they have to act quickly if the violence continues. A plan may be used only once, or revised many times. Planning is a way for victims to gain perspective, manage your situation and stay safe.
What is a Safety Plan?
A Safety Plan helps victims work out their options for reducing risk and getting out of danger. It isn’t a way to make the family violence or sexual assault stop. Victims are not the cause of abuse and cannot take responsibility for preventing or stopping incidents.
Sometimes there is added risk, like when you inform a partner the relationship is ended or, a partner discovers your plans to leave. A Safety Plan is way for victims to see the safest, most realistic and affordable ways to protect children and stay safe.
How to make a Safety Plan
Community support services are able to help sexual assault and family violence victims develop a safety plan. Or you may prefer to download the JTAFV Safety Plan template. Alternatively, you may find a suitable Safety Plan template online.
If you use a template or example, remember it contains someone else’s ideas. You will need to judge what the best choices are for you and your children.
Your Safety Plan will include sections on:
- Strategies for violent incidents
- Preparing to leave your home
- Safety measures for the house
- Enforcing a Protection Order
- Safety at work and in public
- Physical and mental health
Safety Planning tips
Getting help with your Safety Plan is a good idea. Remember that, while adults can make decisions about their own level of safety, community workers are obliged to report children at risk.
- Don’t underestimate the danger. Plan for all possible risks, especially if things get worse.
- Plan for violence or harassment that could occur if you leave or threaten to leave.
- Work in partnership with someone you can trust to help you take any necessary action.
- Review your Safety Plan with a community support agency, if possible.
- Update as things change, like a new baby, Intervention Order or the relationship ends.
An array of information and resources are available to help you live a full life after abuse or assault. Ask Jewish Taskforce Against Family Violence or a mainstream provider for copies.
What to do with your plan?
When making a Safety Plan, consider how to keep it secure from the person being violent or abusive.
Practise the Safety Plan regularly and include the children in your emergency ‘Fire’ drill.
Review the Safety Plan at regular intervals to ensure the options decided on previously still represent the best choice.
Contact the Jewish Taskforce Support Line for information about where to get help making a Safety Plan. Or check our Links page for community support organisations.