Safety Planning

One way to improve safety is to plan. The following is an Empowerment Through Planning Safety Check List. You can’t control the abusive behavior, but you can take steps to protect yourself from harm. Whether you decide to stay or end the unhealthy relationship, you should consider creating a safety plan.

A safety plan is a personalized and practical plan for reducing risk of being hurt or abused. By thinking through it in advance, a safety plan can help you avoid dangerous situations and know the best way to react when you are in danger.

With a safety plan in place, you will arm yourself with tools that will protect you (and your children) from possible further harm. You can empower yourself through this act of self-preservation and protection.

The chart below highlights some important things to consider in creating your safety plan.

Before violence occurs
again, think about:

Pack photocopies or
originals of the

Prepare a bag with the
following items and
leave it in a safe place
(eg. neighbor, friend, work):

  • Going to a safe place, trusted friend, Emergency Room, family or public place. Locating all possible ways to leave.
  • Leaving and taking your children with you.
  • Staying out of rooms with weapons.
  • Getting your own bank account.
  • Keeping some money outside the home so that you will have it if you leave.
  • Deciding on a code word to signal a friend that you are leaving and need support.


  • Birth certificates
  • Social Insurance Numbers
  • Driver’s licence & registration
  • Passports
  • Address Book
  • Divorce paper or separation agreement
  • Custody Agreements
  • Insurance papers
  • Lease/Mortgage papers
  • Copy of restraining order or Peace bond
  • Bank Book
  • School & vaccination records


  • Phone card or coins.
  • Extra set of clothes and shoes, for you and your children.
  • Toys for your children.
  • Medications and Prescriptions.
  • Extra key for the house, car and office.
  • Phone numbers of emergency shelters.