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What can I do if I am facing Family Violence?

Things I can do when I am facing family violence

Being abused or hurt by someone close is awful. Domestic violence is when one party in a relationship purposely abuses or hurts another party physically or emotionally. If you are being abused or hurt, get help. Below are several options for help, depending on the severity of violence and the nature of the emergency.

Call for help

You can call the Police at 999 for advice or help.

Get medical attention

  • In case of serious physical injury, see a doctor immediately.
  • Inform the doctor of the true cause of the injuries. Do not try to cover up the cause of the injuries.
  • All medical reports are confidential.
  • It is useful to seek medical attention even though there are no serious injuries because you can get the doctor to write a medical report for the Court if you are intending to apply for a Personal Protection Order.
  • Remember to keep your medical receipts as evidence.

Reporting to the police

  • You should go ahead and make a police report even if you do not intend to seek legal action now. The police report will be useful when you decide to seek legal action in the future.
  • You can go to any neighbourhood police post to make a police report.
  • Keep a copy of the police report for future references.
  • Adduce evidence such as texts or mails that reflects harassment for cases of emotional abuse.
  • For cases of physical abuse that leaves no visible marks, it would be helpful if there are eyewitnesses.

Seeking counselling

  • Look for a counsellor for emotional support. The counsellor can help you to think things through.
  • Counselling might help the abusers by acknowledging and changing their behaviour.

Seeking shelter in a crisis situation

  • This should be your last option when you have no one to turn to.
  • You need a referral from the police, any FSCs or hospital social workers to get admission to a crisis shelter.
  • As a general rule, the maximum period of stay in a crisis shelter is 3 months.

Seeking legal protection

Protection Orders are available to protect the following parties:

  • Spouse or former spouse;
  • A child, including step and adopted children;
  • Father, mother, in-laws or siblings of the offender;
  • Any other relative or person who is unable to look after him or herself and is in the opinion of the Court that he or she should be regarded as a member of the family.
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