Safely remaining in your home

If you are a victim of domestic abuse, there are options to help you stay in your home if you want to and it does not put you at risk. Your safety is the most important thing.

You might want to stay because you live near to your:

  • children's schools
  • place of work
  • friends, family and other support networks

These can provide reassurance and help at a time when you need it the most. Uprooting yourself and your family is not the only answer.

Making your property secure

We partner with the charity Safe Partnership. They help make properties secure for those in fear of domestic abuse. They do this by reinforcing homes with added security measures.

Safe Partnership offers help for those who are renting privately or who own their homes. Social housing providers must provide extra security measures for their properties.

The types of security measures can include:

  • new door and window locks
  • door chain
  • viewer to the front door
  • personal alarms
  • window shock alerts

Each case will be different, but they can tailor what they offer to the agreed risk and needs of the household.

Leaving home immediately

In some situations, you might need to leave your home, even if you have a legal right to stay there.

Leaving your home can give you breathing space to make longer-term decisions and have time to think about what you want to do.

Try to arrange somewhere to stay before you leave. You could:

Try to take some essentials with you such as:

  • a change of clothes
  • toiletries
  • any medication you need to take regularly

Try also to bring important items such as:

  • your passport or other forms of ID
  • bank and credit cards
  • mobile phone/charger

Never decide to give up your home permanently until you have spoken to our housing officers and considered all your options.

Get homeless help

You can make a homeless application if you are unable to stay in your home because of violence or fear of violence.

You can ask any council in the UK for help. You might want to ask a council outside of where you live to be further away from the person who is causing the abuse, to keep yourself safe.

Asking us for help with housing could be a short-term solution while you take legal action to remove the person who is causing the abuse from your home, or it could mean we permanently house you elsewhere.

We have to provide you with temporary accommodation if you meet certain criteria, including being:

  • eligible for assistance (this relates to your immigration status)
  • homeless
  • in priority need

Examples of priority need include if you have:

  • dependent children as part of your household
  • lost your accommodation due to domestic abuse

We will ask you for details of your situation so we can understand the risk to you. We might ask you for supportive evidence, such as details and dates of incidents or police crime numbers. You can bring a friend or an adviser with you for support.

Get help and advice

First Point is a Dorset wide homeless prevention service which can also support those experiencing domestic abuse.

There are lots of organisations that support victims of domestic abuse.

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