Home  Your State  Crime Victims  Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence

What Is Domestic Violence Things To Take When You Leave
What A Victim Can Do Using The Law To Help You
Safety For You & Your Family Where Else To Go For Help

 

 



 

 

 




 

 



 

 

 




 

Safety For You & Your Family

During An Emergency

Safety At Work

When Preparing To Leave

Safety In Public
Safety At Home Safety At The Courthouse
  Making Your Children Safer

Back To Top

 

 



 

 



 

 

 




 

 

 




 

 


 

 








 



 

 

 




 

 

 

 

 




 

 













What is Domestic Violence? 
It is one person's use of emotional, physical and/or sexual violence or threat of violence to get and keep control of an intimate partner.  It affects people from all walks of life, regardless of age, race, religious beliefs, educational background, income or sexual preference.

The Cycles Of Violence 
In most domestic violence situations there are three phases.  First there is a tension Building Phase where there is high tension, stress, anger , blaming and arguing between the victim and abuser.  The explosion occurs during the Battering Phase, when the actual violence occurs.  The last part of the cycle is the Honeymoon Phase, where the abuser may deny, minimize, or excuse his actions by apologizing, promising that it will never happen again, and/or buying gifts.  These techniques are used by abusers to keep their victims confused and under their control.

What A Victim Can Do
You can talk with a friend, neighbor or relative.  You can call a battered women's shelter or program near you.  Most offer telephone counseling, support groups, temporary shelter, legal information and children's programs. 

You can go to the hospital or doctor to check your injuries.  Most hospitals have a social worker on staff who may be able to help you. 

You can call the police.  Arresting an abuser significantly reduces the chances he will repeat the offense.  If an arrest is made, you should contact the Victim Services Division of the Attorney General's Office for more information.  Also, you should contact the jail and ask then to notify you when the abuser is released.

The judge may order the offender to have either "No Contact" or "No Violent Contact" with you as a condition of release on bond.  You may get a copy of the bond conditions from the magistrate judge.  If the offender violates the conditions set by the judge, call the DA's office and 911.  

Using The Law To Help You (Consumer-SOS)
Takes you to the subsection "Using The Law To Help You"

My Ex Is Tracking My Location: How Can I Prevent This? (Consumer-SOS)
Checklist on what to do to keep your location a secret.

The National Victims Notification Network
This service allows crime victims to obtain timely and reliable information about criminal cases and the custody status of offenders 24 hours a day. Victims and other concerned citizens can also register to be notified by phone, email or TTY device when an offender's custody status changes. Users can also register through their participating state or county toll-free number.

How To Find Out About Your State's Domestic Violence Laws 
Has places to call that will furnish you with this information and other tips on where to look.

Domestic Violence Victims-How To Change Your Social Security #

Helping Someone Through Domestic Violence (Tips & Links)


Back To Top

 

Safety During An Emergency

If an argument seems unavoidable, try to have it in a room or area where you have access to an exit.  If you are being threatened or attacked:

  1. STAY AWAY FROM THE KITCHEN (the abuser can find weapons, like knives there). Keep far from wherever guns are kept.  

  2. STAY AWAY FROM BATHROOMS, closets or small spaces where
     the abuser can trap you.  

  3. GET TO A ROOM WITH A DOOR or window to escape.  

  4. CALL 911 (or your local emergency number) right away for help; get the dispatcher's name.  

  5. Think of a neighbor or friend your can run to for help.

  6. If the police come, tell them what happened and get the officers' names and badge numbers.  

  7. GET MEDICAL HELP if you are hurt.  

  8. TAKE PICTURES of bruises or injuries.  

  9. CALL A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROGRAM OR SHELTER; ask them to help you make a safety plan.

For More See Making A Safety Plan

Back To Top

Safety When Preparing To Leave

A.   Open a savings account or credit card in your own name to begin establishing your independence.  Think of other ways in which you can increase your independence.

B.   Get your own post office box.  You can privately
     receive checks and letters to begin your own
     Independence.

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

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

E.   Keep the shelter or hotline phone number close at hand and keep some change or a calling card on you at all times for emergency phone calls.  

F.   REMEMBER-LEAVING YOUR BATTERER IS THE MOST DANGEROUS TIME.  Review your safety plan as often as possible in order to plan the safest way to leave your batterer.

For More See Making A Safety Plan

Back To Top

Protecting Yourself At Home

  1.      Learn where to get help; MEMORIZE EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBERS.  

  2.      KEEP A PHONE in a room you can lock from the inside; if you can, get a cellular phone that you keep with you at all times.

  3.      If the abuser has moved out, CHANGE THE LOCKS ON YOUR DOOR; get locks on the windows.
     

  4.     PLAN AN ESCAPE ROUTE out of your home; teach it to your children. Think about where you would go if you need to escape.

  5.     ASK YOUR NEIGHBORS and landlord to call the police if they see the abuser at or near your home; make a signal for them to call

     the police, for example, if the phone rings twice, a shade is pulled down or a light is on.  

  6.     PACK A BAG with important things you'd need if you had to leave quickly; put it in a safe place, or give it to a friend or relative

     you trust.  Include cash, car keys and important information such as: court papers, passport or birth certificates, medical records and medicines, immigration papers. (See Checklist-What You need To Take When You Leave)

  7.     GET AN UNLISTED PHONE NUMBER.  

  8.     BLOCK CALLER ID.  

  9.     TAKE A GOOD SELF DEFENSE COURSE.

How An Abuser Can Find out About Your Internet Activities


For More See Making A Safety Plan

Back To Top

Checklist-What You Need To Take When You Leave  

IDENTIFICATION

  • Driver's license

  • Children's birth certificates

  • Your birth certificate

  • Social Security Card

  • Welfare identification

 

FINANCIAL

  • Money and/or credit cards

  • Bank books

  • Check books

 

LEGAL PAPERS

  • YOUR RESTRAINING ORDER

  • Lease, rental agreement, house deed

  • Car registration + insurance papers

  • Health + life insurance papers

  • Medical records for you and your children

  • School records

  • Work permits/Green card/VISA

  • Passport

  • Divorce papers

  • Custody papers

 

OTHER/MISC.

  • HOUSE AND CAR KEYS

  • Medications

  • Small sellable objects

  • Jewelry

  • Address book

  • Phone card

  • Pictures of you, children + your abuser

  • Children's small toys

  • Toiletries/diapers

  • Change of clothes for you and your kids

For More See Making A Safety Plan

Back To Top
 

Protecting Yourself While In Public

.   Change your regular travel habits.

.   Try to get rides with different people.

.   Shop and bank in a different place.

.   Cancel any bank accounts or credit cards you shared; open up new accounts at a different bank.

.   Keep your court order and emergency numbers with you at all times.

.   Keep a cell phone and program it to 911 (or other emergency number).

For More See Making A Safety Plan

Back To Top
 

Protecting Yourself While At Work

A.    Decide who at work you will inform of your situation.  This should include office or buildingsecurity and your supervisor if appropriate.  If possible, provide a picture of your batterer.    

B.   Keep a copy of your court order at work.  

C.    Arrange to have an answering machine, caller ID, or a trusted friend or relative screen your calls if possible.  Save any voice mail or e-mail messages from your batterer.  

D.   Don't go to lunch alone.  

E.   Devise a safety plan for when you leave the job.  Have someone escort you to your car, bus, or train and wait with you until you are safely on your way.  Use a variety of routes to go home by if possible.  Think about what you would do if something happened while going home (i.e. in your car, on the bus, etc.).  

For More See Making A Safety Plan

Back To Top

How To Make Your Children Safer

.    TEACH THEM NOT TO GET IN THE MIDDLE OF A FIGHT, even if they want to help.

.    TEACH THEM HOW TO GET TO SAFETY, to call 911, to give your address and phone number to the police.

.   TELL THEM TO STAY OUT OF THE KITCHEN.

.   GIVE THE PRINCIPAL AT THE SCHOOL OR DAY CARE CENTER A COPY OF YOUR COURT ORDER, tell them not to release your children to

 anyone without talking to you first; use a password so they can be sure it is you on the phone.  Give them a photo of the abuser.

.   MAKE SURE THE SCHOOL KNOWS NOT TO GIVE YOUR ADDRESS OR PHONE NUMBER TO ANYONE.  
 

Back To Top 

Using The Law To Help You

How To Find Out About Your State's Domestic Violence Laws 
Has places to call that will furnish you with this information and other tips on where to look.

Other Criminal Matters (Consumer-SOS)

Federal Laws That Protect Battered Women

What Is An Order For Protection
Basic information about Orders of Protection for both the defendant/respondent and the victim/petitioner.

Anti-Stalking Laws & Protection (Consumer-SOS)

Summary Of Victims Rights Throughout The US

Charts and summaries in all states relating to the
Rights for Crime Victims, Right to Notice, Right to Protection 
Right to Confer with Prosecutor, Prompt Return of Property,
Payment for Forensic Exams, HIV Testing of Sex Offenders 
Right to Be Heard, Right to Attend the Trial, Right to Restitution, The Right to Privacy, and Victims' Rights at Juvenile Level. 

Protection Or Restraining Orders

A.   Ask your local domestic violence program who can help you get a civil protection order and who can help you with criminal prosecution.  

B.   Ask for help in finding a lawyer.  

In Most Places, The Judge Can:  

.   ORDER THE ABUSER TO STAY AWAY from you or your children.

.   ORDER THE ABUSER TO LEAVE YOUR HOME.

.   GIVE YOU TEMPORARY CUSTODY of your children and order the abuser to pay you temporary child support.

.    ORDER THE POLICE TO COME TO YOUR HOME while the abuser picks up personal belongings.

.   GIVE YOU POSSESSION OF THE CAR, furniture and other belongings.

.    ORDER THE ABUSER TO GO TO A BATTERERS INTERVENTION PROGRAM.

.    ORDER THE ABUSER NOT TO CALL YOU AT WORK.

.    ORDER THE ABUSER TO GIVE ALL GUNS TO THE POLICE.    

If you are worried about any of the following, make sure you:  

A.   SHOW THE JUDGE ANY PICTURES of your injuries.  

B.   TELL THE JUDGE YOU DO NOT FEEL SAFE if the abuser comes to your home to pick up the children to visit with them.

C.   ASK THE JUDGE TO ORDER THE ABUSER TO PICK UP AND RETURN THE CHILDREN AT THE POLICE STATION OR SOME OTHER SAFE PLACE.  

D.   Ask that any VISITS THE ABUSER IS PERMITTED ARE AT VERY SPECIFIC TIMES so the police will know by reading the court order that the abuser is there at the wrong time.

E.   TELL THE JUDGE IF THE ABUSER HAS HARMED OR THREATENED the children; ask that visits be supervised; think about who could do that for you.  

F.    GET A CERTIFIED COPY of the court order.  

G.   KEEP THE COURT ORDER WITH YOU AT ALL TIMES.

Back To Top

Criminal Matters

How To Find Out About Your State's Domestic Violence Laws
 
Has places to call that will furnish you with this information and other tips on where to look.

Federal Laws That Protect Battered Women

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

Anti-Stalking Laws & Protection (Consumer-SOS)


What To Do In Criminal Proceedings

  1.      SHOW the prosecutor your COURT ORDERS.  
     

  2.      TELL THE PROSECUTOR THE NAMES OF ANYONE WHO IS HELPING YOU (a victim advocate or lawyer).  

  3.      Tell the prosecutor about ANY WITNESS to injuries or abuse.  (Witnesses can include neighbors who heard the incident but did not see it).  

  4.      ASK THE PROSECUTOR TO NOTIFY YOU AHEAD OF TIME IF THE ABUSER IS GETTING OUT OF JAIL.


Back To Top

Protecting Yourself At The Court House

A.   SIT AS FAR AWAY FROM THE ABUSER as you can; you don't have to look or talk to the abuser; you don't have to talk to the abuser's family or friends if they are there.  

B.   BRING A FRIEND OR RELATIVE with you to wait until your case is heard.  

C.   TELL A BAILIFF OR SHERIFF THAT YOU ARE AFRAID of the abuser and ask him/her to look out for you.  

D.   Make sure you HAVE YOUR COURT ORDER BEFORE YOU LEAVE.  

E.   Ask the judge to KEEP THE ABUSER THERE for a while when court is over.  Leave quickly.  

F.   If you think the abuser is following you when you leave, immediately call the police.  

G.   IF YOU HAVE TO TRAVEL TO ANOTHER STATE FOR WORK OR TO ESCAPE THE ABUSER, TAKE YOUR PROTECTION ORDER WITH YOU, IT IS VALID EVERYWHERE. 

Back To Top
 

Where Else To Go For Help
Hotlines, Shelters & More

Your State Other States (Scroll Down)
 

Other Countries


Help Throughout Your State

Victim Assistance & Compensation (All 50 States & DC)

United Way Help Line  ( All 50 States, DC & Puerto Rico)
Choose your state, select your city, and look up help agencies galore!!! Their stellar search engine can lead you to any social service topic you can think of. Just type in the words "Domestic violence" or "Battered Women" or "Children and Abuse", etc.

Asian & Pacific Islander Institute On Domestic Violence
Links To Asian Help Groups. 

Help For Battered Women Immigrants (All 50 States & DC)

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

AT&T Language Link (800) 528-5888  
Provides interpreters in 100 languages.
 

 

  Help In Other States

California South Carolina
Michigan Texas
Minnesota All 50 States
New York  

California

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

Asian & Pacific Islander Institute On Domestic Violence
Links To Asian Help Groups Throughout The United States.

FamilyViolence Prevention Fund (415) 252-8900 
San Francisco. e-mail: leni@fvpf.org

For More In Your State, See All 50 States

Back To Top


Michigan


Domestic Violence Handbook
Learn about the cycles of violence, safety plans and where to get help. Michigan based help orgs but information for everybody.

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)


For More In Your State, See All 50 States

Back To Top

Minnesota

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

Perspectives Inc. (612) 926-2600 or (612) 926-9847
Domestic violence agency helps with shelter, counseling, prevention/intervention and recovery programs for alcohol and drug abuse. They publish a 50 page booklet called Striving To Be Violence Free...A Guidebook for Creating A Safety Plan. This book contains several checklists that help battered women who still live with their abusers explore options and make sound choices.  To order the guidebook, send $4.00 to Perspectives Inc., 3381 Gorham Ave., St. Louis Park, Minn. 55426 (Attn. Guidebook).  Include your name and address clearly printed on the address label, 3 by 5 card or sheet of paper.  Allow four to five weeks for delivery.  Note: You may want it send to a friends house to avoid a confrontation with the abuser.

For More In Your State, See All 50 States

Back To Top


New York


Aggravated Battered Women Fact Sheet

Back To Top


South Carolina

Groups Throughout The State

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

Safe Harbor (Greenville) (864) 467-3636
Open 24 hours and accepts collect calls too.  Shelter that offers variety of different counseling and referral services free of charge.

The Helpline (Greenville) (864) 467-3300  
Referral service for agencies that can help.

Greenville County Solicitor's Office (864) 467-8647  
   
                                            (864) 467-5904
For a protection order free of charge and without an attorney.                        

Family Counseling Center (Greenville) (800) 203-9692
Counseling for domestic violence .

Compass Of Carolina (Family Violence Intervention) (Greenville) (864) 467-3434
Counsels the whole family. Fees likely based on sliding scale.  

For More In Your State, See All 50 States


Christian Counseling In SC

Pastoral Counseling (Greenville) (864) 232-1824  
Contact: Dr. John Miller

Buncombe Street Pastoral Counseling Center (864) 235-6011(Greenville)  
Provides individual counseling to people with a variety of personal problems.  

For More In Your State, See All 50 States

Back To Top


Texas

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

Dept. Of Protective & Regulatory Services (800) 252-5400
For immediate assistance or 24 hour-a-day shelter information.

Texas Council On Family Violence (512) 794-1133
Call them for a directory of Texas shelters for battered women.

Asian & Pacific Islander Institute On Domestic Violence
Links To Asian Help Groups Throughout The United States.
 

All 50 States

National Domestic Violence Hotline (800) 799-7233  TDD: (800) 787-3224   
Helps victim of domestic violence and their families.  They discuss options, safety planning, give legal help, and provide counseling and referrals.  Non-English speaking people should wait on the line till an operator identifies the language and connects them to a translator.

Criminal Justice Divisions/ Attorney General's (All 50 States)

National, State and International Domestic Violence Help Groups
Scroll down to desired locality.

State By State Domestic Violence Help

Crime Victim Compensation Directory (All 50 States & DC)
Federal and state funding to help victims of felonies and misdemeanors. 

Victim Services By State, Territory, Or Possession (All US)
Click on the map for a listing of direct service programs and other referrals in your state. 

Where Federal Employees Can Find DV Help

Victims' Rights Sourcebook

Asian & Pacific Islander Institute On Domestic Violence
Links To Asian Help Groups Throughout The United States.

Help For Battered Women Immigrants (All 50 States & DC)

Directory Of Women's Groups By Subject & State (All 50 States & DC)
Use their search engine to locate over 9000 feminists groups and help agencies.

United Way Help Line  (All 50 States, DC & Puerto Rico)
Choose your state, select your city, and look up help agencies galore!!! Their stellar search engine can lead you to any social service topic you can think of. 
Just type in the words "Domestic violence" or "Battered Women" or "Children and Abuse", etc.

What You Can Do If You're A Victim Of a Crime (Help #s, no links)
Scroll Down for lots of Toll-Free Help #s.

Stalking-Your Rights & Resources

Where To Write For Vital Records (50 States & DC)
For birth, death and marriage certificates, divorce papers and more.

Battered Women Justice Project
National clearing house for information on domestic violence issues.

Center For Women's Global Leadership
Their focus is on policy at the UN level, advocacy campaigns and human rights development. They also can refer you to domestic violence groups throughout the U.S.
 

AT&T Language Link (800) 528-5888  
Provides interpreters in 100 languages.  Services charge per minute and you must pay by credit card.

Back To Top
 

Help In Other Countries
Belgium
Canada
International


Belgium

(Brussels)

Open Deur 32 2 513-0108   e-mail: opendeur@misc.irisnet.be
Provides shelter, counseling, legal assistance, crisis support and other information for abused migrant and refugee women.

Centre de Prevention des Violences Conjugales et Familiales/Coordination des Groupes Contre les Violences 
32 2 534-4946
e-mail: violences.familiales@misc.irisnet.be
Domestic violence prevention.  Provides shelter counseling, prevention, crisis support, information, health care, therapy.

Pag-Asa VZW 32 2 511-6464
St. Kristoffelsstraat 31, B-1000 Brussels.
 
Shelter, counseling, legal assistance, crisis support, information.  Prevents domestic violence and trafficking in women.
   

Nederlandstadlige Vrouwenraad/ Dutch Speaking Counsel of Women 32 2 229-3818 e-mail: nvr@ngonet.be 
Stopping violence against migrant and refugee women.  Provides counseling, legal assistance, training, prevention, public awareness/lobbying research and information.

Mobility International 32 2 201-5608 e-mail: mobint@arcadis.be  
Training, prevention, public awareness/lobbying and other information regarding domestic violence and women's human rights.

Assistant social aupres de la gendarmerie-Distric de Bruxelles 32 2 507-9648  Rue croix de fer 77, B-1000 Brussels
Counseling centre; also provides shelter and information.      

Women & Development in Europe 011 322-545-9070 (Brussels)
                                        
Fax 011 3225127342
 

Amnesty International 011-322-538-8177 (Brussels)
                          fax 011-322-537-3729  
 

For More Help See International

Back To Top

See All 50 States

Back To Top


Canada

Match International Center (613) 238-1312

(Ottawa, Ontario) e-mail: matchint@web.apc.org

For More Help See International

Back To Top


Internationa
l

National, State & International Domestic Violence Help Groups
Scroll down to desired locality.

WAVE Austrian Women's Shelter Network Information Center Against Violence Against Women 43-1-548-2720
e-mail wave@xpoint.at
(Vienna, Austria)  

WAVE is a European network of organizations serving battered women.  Their website has the names and numbers of women's help groups throughout Europe.
 

Womens Rights Network (781) 283-2548  
International women's civil rights group focusing on domestic violence and sexual abuse. Their database can direct you to help agencies anywhere in the world.

International Center For Research On Women(202)797-0007  
e-mail: icrw@igc.apc.org OR
richard@icrw.org  

Women, Law and Development International (202) 463-7477  

UNIFEM (United Nations Development Fund For Women) (212) 906-6454

International Women's Tribune Center
(212) 687-8633  

e-mail: iwtc@igc.apc.org

Equality Now (212) 586-0906 
e-mail:
equalitynow@igc.apc.org
 

Sisterhood Is Global Institute (301) 657-4355  
e-mail: signi@igc.apc.org
Offers human right education workshops in the middle east and Central Asia.  They have connections to help agencies in Azerbaijan, India, Pakistan, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt and beyond.

Match International Center (613) 238-1312  
(Ottawa, Ontario Canada) e-mail:
matchint@web.apc.org  

Back To Top

 

Crime Victims and Domestic Violence