Leaving an abusive relationship - strategies to consider.

2b. A guide to leaving home in an emergency

Est. read time: 2 min

If you are facing a crisis right now call Triple Zero (000).

Press to call 000 


The priority is your and your children's safety. If you leave the home, in most situations it is best to take your children with you.

If you have time to plan before you leave it is important to create a safety plan which covers the points you need to think about to keep you and your children safe. More information about creating a safety plan can be found at 1d. Making a safety plan.

Women's refuges


Women’s refuges provide safe, temporary accommodation and associated support services to women and children in a crisis and needing to escape family and domestic violence.  The following organisations get a list of refuge vacancies each morning and afternoon and you can call them for the latest vacancy information and to obtain assistance in getting into a refuge:

  • Women's DV Helpline (24 hours)
    08 9223 1188 – Metro
    1800 007 339 – Free call
  • Crisis Care (24 hours)
    08 9223 1111 – Metro
    1800 199 008 – Free call

Starting Over Support (SOS) is dedicated to providing families with free household goods after leaving a refuge.  You need to be referred to SOS by a refuge or government agency, so if you stay in a refuge remember to ask about it.

Important phone numbers

  • Women’s DV Helpline (24 hours)
    Phone: 08 9223 1188  or 1800 007 339
    The Women’s Domestic Violence Helpline is a state wide service providing support for women, with or without children, who are experiencing family and domestic violence. This includes information and advice, referral to local advocacy and support services, liaison with police if necessary, assessing the child’s experience if there are children in the family and support in escaping situations of family and domestic violence. The service can refer women to safe accommodation if required. A telephone based interpreting service is available if required.
  • Crisis Care Helpline (24 hours)
    Phone: 08 9223 1111 or 1800 199 008
    As well as providing information on women's refuges vacancies, this telephone service also provides information, advice, support and intervention for people in crises and needing urgent help, including child protection concerns, family and domestic violence and homelessness. Crisis care prioritises child protection concerns.
  • Domestic Violence Liaison Officer (WA Police) (24 hours)
    Phone: 131 444
    Call this number if you need to report a breach of a Family Violence Order, or require Police attendance.  Further information on how the Police can help can be found at the WA Police website.
  • Emergency Services (24 hours) Dial: 000

Things to take with you


For some things to take with you if it is safe to do so, see 1c. Documents you need to take with you when leaving a relationship and 1d. Making a safety plan which contain information on documentation to collect and safety planning. However, if you haven't been able to prepare in advance and have to leave in a hurry, it will be helpful later on if you have these things:

  • An identifying document (such as a passport or driver's licence);
  • Prescription medicines and eye glasses;
  • A change of clothes for you and the children (a quick way to grab these might be to take the dirty laundry basket);
  • Cash and/or credit cards.

But remember safety is the priority in an emergency – don't put yourself in danger to get these things.

[Article Updated: 29/5/21]

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