Domestic abuse and housing

Domestic abuse is not your fault and you will not get into trouble for telling someone about it.  If you are experiencing domestic abuse, further information on how to access advice and support is available on the South Gloucestershire Council website.

If you think that you are in danger seek help and do not 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.

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Page contents:

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.

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, fitting fire proof letter boxes and putting in a panic room
  • looking at what legal action you can take against the perpetrator such as injunctions or other orders to prevent the perpetrator from  coming near you and your home.

HomeChoice is the Council’s housing options service and they will talk about these options with you and will always respect your wishes and if you need to move to feel safe. You can find out further information by completing their Housing Options Wizard.

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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 will assess your current and future needs including rehousing.

Next Link provide safe house accommodation in South Gloucestershire. You can call them on Freephone: 0800 4700 280 or email: southglos@nextlinkhousing.co.uk.

The National Domestic Violence runs a 24 hours helpline on Freephone 0808 2000 247. This helpline is run by Women’s Aid and Refuge.

When you leave, if you can, take essentials with you such as a change of clothes, toiletries and any medication you need to take regularly.

Try to take 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.

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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.

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Refuges for men

If you are a 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.

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Further information

Get homelessness help from South Gloucestershire Council

You can apply to the council as a homeless person if you cannot stay in your home. They 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 the South Gloucestershire Council Homelessness leaflet.

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 will not tell anyone else you are calling unless you are in immediate danger. They can tell you about places where you can get help.

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Confidentiality

Whatever you discuss with South Gloucestershire Council or any of its partners will always remain completely confidential.

Contact telephone numbers

South Gloucestershire Council Homelessness Service 01454 868005

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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