Stay Safe

Computers and Cell Phones
For instance, did you know:
o You can be monitored by someone else’s computer without you knowing.
o Spyware can be installed secretly on your own computer to capture screen shots and log emails, messaging, chats, and websites.
o The “history” cannot be completely erased from a computer.
o Cell phones can be monitored.
o A global positioning system (GPS) can be placed on your car, in your purse, in your cell phone, or in a child’s book bag.
o  E-mail is like a postcard and can be intercepted.
If you are afraid your computer and/or cellphone usage might be monitored, please use a safer computer and/or telephone.

During an argument that could become violent, try to:
o Guide the argument into a room that has an exit.  Stay out of the kitchen and bathroom.
o Identify a neighbor or friend that you can confide in that would call the police if an argument gets very loud.
o Devise a code word that lets older children or other family members know when you need help.
o Decide where you can go if you need to leave.
o Use your instincts.  You know the other person better than anyone.  You know when you are in danger.

When you are ready, make a plan to leave:
o Try to put some money back.  It could just be a few dollars here and there.
o If you don’t have a cell phone, get a 911 cell phone from the Crisis Center.
o Leave an extra set of keys, copies of important papers, children’s things and/or special things with a trusted friend.
o Keep important phone numbers written down and within easy reach.
o If you have pets, make arrangements for them in case of an emergency.
o Remember:  Leaving an abusive situation can be the most dangerous time for you.

If you have Protective Order:
o Keep a copy with you at all times.
o Call law enforcement EVERY time the Protective Order is violated.
o Tell friends and family so they will know to call for help if necessary.
o Have a back-up plan in case law enforcement cannot respond immediately.
o If possible, have someone screen your calls.
o Walk with someone to and from your car.
o Take different routes to and from work.  Change your hours if possible.

Remember:  You have the right to be safe.  You do not deserve to be abused.