Staying Safe

Staying Safe Land Line

When you have finished speaking with a Pathways Case Manager, hang up the phone and then lift the receiver, dial any number and hang up again. This way, if someone presses the redial button on that same phone they won’t be connected to our crisis line.


Staying Safe Cell Phone

Cell phones can be a beacon, tracking your exact location in real time. Call and text history can also be retrieved by an abusive partner or perpetrator. Additionally, a location tracking device (GPS) can be placed on your car, in your purse or other possessions. Consider purchasing a pay as you go phone that you keep in a safe place to allow you to make calls. After speaking with a Pathways Advocate from a cell phone, remember to delete the call from your call log.

Staying Safe

Staying Safe Online

If you are living with an abuser or know your perpetrator, the safest way to look for resources online is to use a computer that the abuser cannot access, such as a public terminal at a library, community center, or sexual violence advocacy organization. It is possible for the abuser to trace your Internet activities and see that you have viewed the Pathways website. If you must use a computer that your abuser or perpetrator has access to, please read the following instructions.

Please select your browser below for instructions on how to clear the Pathways website to minimize risk after viewing. Please Note: This will not erase information from spyware or key-logging devices.

Staying Safe

Staying Safe on Social Media

Only post things you want the public to see or know. Once it’s online, it’s no longer under your control.

Be protective of your personal information. Your phone numbers and addresses enable people to contact you directly, and things like your birth date, the schools you attended, your employer and photos with landmarks may make it easier for someone to find where you live, hang out or go to school.

Set boundaries and limits. Tell people not to post personal information, negative comments or check-ins about you on social media. Ask people not to post or tag pictures if you’re not comfortable with it.

Keep your passwords private – there is no need to share passwords to social media accounts with anyone.

If you have a friend in an abusive relationship DO NOT post information about them without getting their permission. You could jeopardize their safety.

*Information on staying safe with cell phones and social media is from The National Hotline,

Safety Planning

If you are still in the relationship:

  • If you have access to your vital documents such as: passports, visas, birth certificate, children’s birth certificate, medical documents, and financial records keep them safe and keep copies of each in a safe, secure location.
  • Think of a safe place to go if an argument occurs – avoid rooms with no exits (bathroom), or rooms with weapons (kitchen).
  • Think about and make a list of safe people to contact.
  • Keep change with you at all times.
  • Memorize all important numbers.
  • Establish a “code word” or “sign” so that family, friends, teachers or co-workers know when to call for help.
  • Think about what you will say to your partner if he/she becomes violent.

Remember, you have the right to live without fear and violence.

If you have left the relationship:

  • Change your phone number.
  • Screen calls.
  • Save and document all contacts, messages, injuries or other incidents involving the batterer.
  • Change locks, if the batterer has a key.
  • Avoid staying alone.
  • Plan how to get away if confronted by an abusive partner.
  • If you have to meet your partner, do it in a public place.
  • Vary your routine.
  • Notify school and work contacts.
  • Call a shelter for battered women.

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Staying Safe