October is nationally known as Domestic Violence Awareness Month made possible through the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence in 1981.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, below are safety tips to consider suggested by the Dallas Police Department:
- The first step to safety is action. If an argument seems unavoidable, try to have it in a room or area that has access to an exit and not in a bathroom, kitchen, or anywhere near potential weapons.
- Practice how to get out of your home safely. Identify which doors, windows, elevator, or stairwell works best.
- Have a packed bag ready and keep it in an undisclosed but accessible place in order to leave quickly.
- Identify a neighbor you can tell about the violence and ask that they call the police if they hear a disturbance coming from your home.
- Devise a code word to use with your children, family, friends, and neighbors when you need the police.
- Decide and plan for where you will go if you must leave home (even if you don't think you will need to leave).
- Keep the phone numbers of area shelters close at hand.
People who are experiencing family violence can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE.