Helpful Tips

A Restraining Order

A Restraining Order

  • Keep your restraining order with you at all times. Leave extra copies at work, with a friend, in your car, etc.
  • Call the police if your partner breaks the court order.
  • Think of alternative ways to keep safe if the police do not respond right away.
  • Inform family, friends and neighbours that you have a restraining order in effect.
  • Try to avoid places in the community your abuser may frequent.

For more information on how to obtain a restraining order, please contact the police.

Checklist - What to Take When You Leave

Checklist – What to Take When You Leave

  • Identification
  • Driver’s licence, car title and registration
  • Children’s birth certificates
  • Your birth and marriage certificates
  • Money
  • Restraining order
  • Lease, rental agreement, house deed
  • Bank books/chequebooks
  • Insurance papers
  • House and car keys
  • Medications
  • Address books,  pictures
  • Medical records for all family members
  • Social security card
  • Welfare identification
  • School records
  • Work permits
  • Immigration papers, passport
  • Divorce papers
  • Jewellery, children’s small toys
  • Pets (if you can)
  • Important Phone Numbers (Police,Hotline, Friends, Shelter)

If you've been sexually assaulted

If you’ve been sexually assaulted

Get to a safe place – anywhere that you feel comfortable and free from violence or danger

Call someone you can trust – a friend, relative or call the SAVIS crisis line: 905-875-1555  we can meet you at the hospital or police station

Seek medical attention – Hospital Emergency Room, Nina’s Place (Sexual Assault & Domestic Violence Care Unit in Halton), a clinic, or your doctor are all options.  905-632 -3737 ext 5708 for Nina’s Place.  You may seek medicial attention without having to report to the police.  CAS and the police may need to get involved if you are under 16 years old.

Call the police if you want – 911 or the Sexual Assault Department of The Halton Police: 905-878-5511

Talk to individuals you can trust – for emotional, physical and spiritual support (e.g. friends, teachers, spiritual leaders, counsellors, partners, & crisis line workers)

Preserve Evidence!!!
If possible do not:

  1. Bathe / shower
  2. Brush your teeth
  3. Go to the bathroom
  4. Change your clothes
  5. Clean up your house

Saving clothing, underwear and any other physical evidence may also be helpful, if you decide to have a sexual assault evidence kit completed (a medical collection process).  If you have showered or have not preserved evidence, you can still report to the police.

FYI…The police can hold the sexual assault evidence kit for up to 6 months without having to press any charges – you can decide later if you want to report to the police.

If you've encountered abuse

If you’ve encountered abuse

  • After the relationship is terminated, your safety depends on not having contact with the offender, which includes not talking to or meeting with the offender. Stay busy with positive interactions and goals. Implement calming hobbies.
  • Use your instincts. If you find yourself in a dangerous situation, placate abuser if possible to keep them calm, then call the police.
  • Remember to still follow the safety ideas listed above.
  • Know where the nearest pay phone is located and how to get there.
  • Keep emergency phone numbers in a convenient and safe location.
  • Don’t wear scarves, necklaces, loose clothing or jewelry that can be used to strangle.
  • Talk to a trusted adult or to a professional therapist.
  • Inform trusted friends and family members of the past violence and to call police if the abuser comes nearby and if they hear violence.
  • Change your cell phone number and email address.

Preparing to leave an abusive partner

Preparing to leave an abusive partner

  • Identify who would let you stay with them or lend you some money.
  • Always try to take your children with you or make arrangements to leave them with someone safe.
  • Leave money, an extra set of keys, copies of important documents, and extra clothes with someone you trust.
  • Open a savings account in your own name to start to establish or increase your independence.  Think of other ways in which you can increase your independence.
  • Keep the shelter numbers close at hand and keep change or a calling card with you at all times.
  • Review your safety plan with a friend or counsellor in order to plan the safest way to leave your abuser.

Safety on the job and in public

Safety on the job and in public

  • Let people at work know that you feel unsafe – tell security, and coworkers and provide picture of abuser if possible.
  • When at work, if possible, have someone screen your phone calls.
  • Identify a safety plan for when you leave work. Have someone escort you to your car, bus or train.
  • Use a variety of routes to go home if possible. Think about what you would do if something happened while going home.

Safety planning in your home

Safety planning in your home

  • Inform neighbours and your landlord that your abuser no longer lives with you and that they should call the police if they see your abuser near your home.
  • Rehearse a safety plan with your children for when you are not with them.
  • Inform your children’s school or day care about who has permission to pick up your children. (Give them a copy of your restraining order.)
  • Change/Add locks on your doors and windows as soon as possible. Add a peephole and increase outdoor lighting if possible. Try to borrow a portable or cellular phone.
  • Change your telephone number, and make sure it is unlisted. Don’t give it to anyone you don’t trust.