Do you feel safe? Safety is important in every family. You can get help if you feel unsafe.
Your Safety Matters
Your safety is what matters most! No one has the right to hurt or abuse you in any way. If you feel unsafe or scared, you should ask for help or talk to someone who can help you and make you feel safe.
What is Abuse?
Abuse can happen to anyone, at any age. Sometimes, abuse happens in a family. Abuse might happen in different ways:
- Physically – such as hitting, kicking, pushing.
- Sexually – unwanted sexual activity such as touching private parts, sexual advances or sex acts.
- Emotionally/psychologically – such as threats, harassment, and name calling.
- Neglect- The failure to meet the basic needs of a person (such as not providing food, proper clothing, required medication, etc.).
These are just some examples. Abuse can happen in other ways. Abuse is not okay. No one has the right to hurt another person, including a family member.
If You Feel Unsafe, Tell Someone
There are options available to help you deal with violence in the family:
- You can always talk about the abuse to any older person who makes you feel safe. This person could be your teacher, coach, neighbour, family friend, older relative, or doctor. Reach out to someone that you trust.
- The police can be called to help in situations of family violence or emergencies. Sometimes a family member who did the abusing might be charged with a crime. It is not your fault if charges are laid by the police. Call 911 (or dial 0 and ask for the police) if you are in an emergency situation.
- When parents cannot properly take care of or protect their children for any number of reasons, child protection social workers may become involved. The child protection social workers will look at how they can help children and families and offer support.
There are other legal options that a parent or guardian can apply for to help protect against abuse, such as emergency protection orders and peace bonds. Please see the Family Law Dictionary section of this website for definitions of both.