Domestic Violence

If you are living or have lived with someone, if you have dated someone, if you have a child as a result of a relationship with another person and that other person is hurting you physically, then you may be in a domestic violence relationship. It is important that you get help by contacting your local police department or area domestic violence shelter (in Quincy: Quanada 222-3069). If you are a senior citizen and you are being neglected or abused or otherwise individuals are stealing from you, then you need assistance. Contact your local police department or senior citizen advocate (in Quincy, call 223-5700).

There is help for you and you need not remain in a relationship, which results in further injury or victimization of you. If you are in a domestic relationship and you do not feel that you can leave at this time, the Quincy Police Department would like to offer the following safety plan as a suggestion to keep you safe:

I. Safety During An Explosive Incident

  1. If an argument seems unavoidable, have it in a place that has access to an exit and avoid a bathroom, a kitchen or anywhere where there are weapons.

  2. Identify doors, windows, elevators and stairwells and other ways to get out of your home safely ahead of time.

  3. Have a packed bag ready and keep it hidden but accessible in order to leave quickly.

  4. Identify a neighbor who you can tell about the violence and ask them to call police if they hear a disturbance from your home. Devise a code word to use with children, family and friends when you need the police. Decide and plan where you will go if you must leave your home.

  5. Use your instincts and judgment - If the situation is very dangerous, consider giving the abuser what they want to calm down. You have the right to protect yourself until you are out of danger.

  6. Always remember - you don't deserve to be hit or threatened!

II. Safety When Preparing To Leave

  1. 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.

  2. Leave money, an extra set of keys, copies of important documents and extra clothes with someone you trust so you can leave quickly.

  3. Determine who would be able to let you stay with them or lend you some money.

  4. Keep the shelter phone number close at hand and keep some change or a calling card on you at all times for emergencies.

  5. Review your safety plan as often as possible in order to plan the safest way to leave your batterer. Leaving your batterer is the most dangerous time.

III. Safety In Your Home

  1. Change the locks on doors quickly - buy additional safety locks and devices to secure your windows.

  2. Discuss a safety plan with children for when they are not with you.

  3. Inform your children's school, day care, etc., about who have permission to pick up your children.

  4. Inform neighbors/landlord that your partner no longer lives with you and they should call the police if they see them near your home.

IV. Keep Protective Order On You At All Times

  1. When you change your purse or wallet, that should be the first thing that goes in it.

  2. Call the police if the partner breaks the protective order.

  3. Think of alternative ways to keep safe if the police do not respond right away.

  4. Inform family, friends and neighbors that you have a protective order in effect.

V. Safety On The Job And In Public

  1. Decide who at work you will inform of your situation . . . including office or building security and provide a picture of your batterer, if possible.

  2. Arrange to have someone screen telephone calls and visitors.

  3. Devise a safety plan for when you leave work . . . have someone escort you to your car, bus or train . . . use varied routes to go home, if possible. Think what you would do if something happened while you were going home (i.e., in your car, on the bus, etc.).

VI. Your Safety And Emotional health

  1. If you are thinking of returning to a potentially abusive situation, discuss an alternative plan with someone you trust.  

  2. If you have to communicate with your partner, determine the safest way to do so.

  3. Have positive thoughts about yourself and be assertive with others about your needs.

  4. Read books, articles and poems to help you feel stronger.

  5. Decide whom you can call to talk freely and openly to give you the support you need.

  6. Plan to attend a victim's support group for at least two weeks to gain support from others and learn more about yourself and the relationship.

VII. If You Are A Teen In A Violent Dating Relationship

  1. Decide which, friend, teacher, relative or police officer you can tell.

  2. Contact an advocate at the court to decide how to obtain a restraining order and make a safety plan.