Domestic abuse and housing
Domestic abuse is not your fault and you won’t get into trouble for telling someone about it.
If you feel that you are experiencing domestic abuse, further information on how to access advice and support is available online.
If you think that you are in danger, seek help and don’t be afraid to call the Police. Ring 999 in an emergency.
Support for applications for emergency injunctions is available from the National Centre for Domestic Violence.
Leaving home immediately
If you are experiencing domestic abuse, leaving your home means that you may have to move away from your family and support, employment, doctors and schools and so on.
Many people don’t want to do this and there are things that can be put in place to keep you safe in your home so you don’t have to leave.
These include things such as:
- carrying out safety work such as changing locks, fire proof letter boxes and putting in panic rooms
- looking at what legal action you can take against the perpetrator such as injunctions or other orders to keep away
HomeChoice will talk about these with you and will always respect your wishes and if you need to move to feel safe. We will discuss your options as explained in our Housing Options Wizard
If you need to leave in an emergency
You could stay with friends or relatives if this is a safe option, while you think about what to do next.
Try to find a place in a refuge where additional support is available through being assigned your own support worker, who assesses your current and future needs including rehousing.
Next Link provide safe house accommodation in South Gloucestershire.
You call them on Freephone: 0800 4700 280 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For 24 hour support, try the National Domestic Violence helpline on Freephone 0808 2000 247. This is a 24 hour helpline run in partnership between Women’s Aid and Refuge
If you can, take essentials with you such as a change of clothes, toiletries and any medication you need to take regularly.
Try to bring important documents such as:
- proof of ID
- birth certificates for you and any children
- National Insurance Number
- any recent bank statements or details of your bank account
- proof of benefits
- your passport and/or other immigration documents
- bank and credit cards
- mobile phone
You are strongly advised not to give up your home permanently until you have spoken to an adviser and considered all your options.
Refuges for women
Please be aware that some refuges for women have an age restriction on male dependents (children). In such cases the council will assess its duty to provide emergency accommodation for you and your family.
Refuges for men
If you are man who has to leave home because of domestic abuse, Next Link has some provision for safe accommodation. This is limited, however there may be options and support available to you.
Get homelessness help from South Gloucestershire Council
You can apply to the council as a homeless person if you can’t stay in your home. We will give you advice about finding somewhere to live and in some cases you may be assessed as eligible for emergency accommodation.
If the council has a duty to find you somewhere to live, you will be asked to provide details of your situation (where possible).
You may be asked for supporting evidence, which could include details and dates of incidents.
You can bring a friend or an adviser with you for support and if you wish, you can be seen by a female housing advisor.
You can find out more in our leaflet Applying as homeless under downloads on this page.
Help for children and young people
The first thing is to tell someone else about what is happening to you.
You can tell a teacher, a neighbour, a friend or a friend’s parent.
You can call Childline on 0800 1111 for free. They won’t tell anyone else you are calling unless you are in immediate danger. They can tell you about places where you can get help.
Whatever you discuss with South Gloucestershire Council or any of its partners will always remain completely confidential.
List of contacts
South Gloucestershire Council Homelessness Service 01454 865496
South Gloucestershire Council Emergency Duty team 01454 615165 (out of hours and weekends)
Police (Emergency) 999
National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247
Men’s Advice Line 0808 801 0327
National LGBT Domestic Violence Helpline (GALOP) 0800 999 5428
Samaritans 08457 90 90 90
Childline 0800 1111
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