No matter where you work, live, or play, reducing the risk of violence or becoming a victim of crime is a matter of increasing your awareness and planning your actions.
What to do to increase your safety:
• Have good locks installed in doors and windows.
• Buy a personal alarm that will keep ringing when dropped.
• Change your walking or jogging route regularly and keep to main paths. Exercise with a friend.
• Take a self-defence or safety awareness course.
• Call someone before you leave so they know when to expect you.
What to do before leaving your house:
• Have good locks on all windows and doors and use them.
• Make sure your home looks lived in, not empty.
• Leave curtains and blinds in normal positions.
• Use timers to turn on and off lights and radios at proper times.
• Have a trusted neighbour keep an eye on your home and put out the garbage for you if necessary.
• Have your lawn mowed and mail and papers collected.
• Install and test smoke, carbon monoxide, and burglar alarms.
• Call forward your phone.
What to do when travelling:
• Never carry large amounts of cash.
• Carry your purse under your arm or wallet in an inside pocket.
• Do not identify your keys with your name or address.
• Never advertise your travel plans to strangers.
• Be aware of your surroundings and remain in well-lit areas.
• Use the centre of sidewalks away from hiding places.
• If you feel uncomfortable, cross the street or leave the area.
• If you feel uncomfortable stopping to help stranded people, assist them by phoning for help.
• Do not carry air tickets or passports in open view. Label your luggage and keep it locked.
What to do if you think someone is breaking into your house:
• If you are just coming home and see signs of a break-in, go to a neighbour’s home and phone 911.
• If you are home at the time, turn on the lights, and call out loudly.
• Phone 911 as soon as possible.
What to do if you think someone is following you:
• Let the person know you are aware of them by looking directly at them.
• Walk directly to a place where people are and ask for help.
• Phone 911.
What to do if you are attacked:
• Do not freeze and do not panic.
• Try to get someone’s help by yelling “Fire”, “Stop”, or “No”.
• Use whatever force you feel is necessary to escape.
• Use a personal alarm device.