Here are some suggestions to help ensure the safety of the person being abused:
- If it is safe to do so, give the individual the Changing Pathways number (0333 333 7 444), or the number of the National Domestic Violence Helpline (0808 2000 247).
- Do not confront the abuser, or let them know the other person is seeking help. This can increase risk.
- Let the individual know that you will support them when they are ready to leave.
- Try not to judge, to blame them or to pressure them to leave.
- Believe what they tell you, and don’t advise them to change their behaviour to stop the abuse.
- Remind them that they can call the police if they feel they are at risk.
- Remind them to keep a log of incidences, and keep a log yourself so you can help if evidence is needed.
- Agree a code word that they can use if they need to contact you when they’re in danger.
- If necessary, always call 999 for emergency help.