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A Great List of Steps to Protect Yourself from Further Abuse

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15 Steps to Freedom from Abuse

By Jackie Gately

According a US Department of Justice study, 75% of law enforcement calls for domestic abuse assistance occur after separating from batterers. The risk to personal safety escalates once an abusive relationship ends. Consider taking these steps to increase your protection.

  1. If there is reason to believe you will be stalked or your personal safety is at risk, the local police station can issue an emergency restraining order that includes your home and work.  
  2. If you believe your children are at risk, extend the order to schools. Provide supporting paperwork to school officials.  
  3. If you must drop-off or pick-up children for visitation, do so at a pre-arranged, public place. Keep your car doors locked. Ways to prevent domestic violence
  4. If approached by your batterer, don’t get out of the car or even roll the window down more than a few inches. Better still, drive away.  
  5. Let neighbors know what’s going on and use their curious nature to your advantage: welcome the extra pair of eyes making sure you’re safe.  
  6. Inform neighbors, co-workers and children to call 911 if they see the batterer near your home or work.  
  7. Install a GPS tracking device in your car so someone you trust knows where you are at all times.  
  8. Carry a cell phone. If you can’t afford one, contact The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence for a phone equipped with 911 service.  
  9. Avoid places where you expect your batterer to be. Likewise, don’t advertise your whereabouts to avoid an unexpected visit.  
  10. Keep house doors and windows locked, including back doors and garage entrances.  
  11. Don’t accept or respond to the batterers phone calls, emails or text messages. Interacting invites the cycle of violence to begin again.  
  12. Keep pepper spray handy. A spray to the face and eyes might provide the moment you need to escape an unwelcomed visit. Pepper spray is legal in all fifty states, but check about specific laws regarding purchase, possession, and use.  
  13. Keep a phone by your bedside to call for help if you wake up to a home invasion or suspect entry.  
  14. Get a house alarm or a dog to alert you to visitors.  
  15. Some states, including Colorado, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Utah, and Washington, allow electronic monitoring as part of a restraining order. A GPS tracking device alerts authorities if a batterer enters a restricted zone. 

Jackie Gately is a freelance writer. She can be reached at jackiegately.wordpress.com.

 

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Written by mothersoflostchildren

January 15, 2009 at 2:36 am

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