Honour Based Violence - Practical Information

Leaving safely

Have a bag packed with:-

  •     spare clothes;
  •     keys, forms of ID such as passports, visa and work permits;
  •     child benefit documents and other welfare documents, toiletries, driving licence and vehicle reg documents;
  •     any prescribed medication you or your children may need;
  •     National Insurance numbers, other documents such as Police reports, courts orders etc
  •     Phone numbers, mobile phone and money in case you have to leave quickly.

Try to keep your mobile phone charged and with you at all times.  If you're afraid that it will be found, leave it at work or with a friend. If you can't keep original copies of important documents, try to obtain and keep photocopies. Talk to your children beforehand about the possibility of leaving in an emergency if it's appropriate. You may want to agree a codeword or a plan with them. Make sure you take your children with you when you leave.

Leave when safe to do so.

If you later discover you have left something essential behind, you can always arrange for a Police escort so you can return for it.

The chain of events needs to be broken and a range of organisations are working to do this.

Individuals also have a part to play. For those people experiencing honour based violence or forced marriage the support of a trusted friend can be invaluable.

Keeping safe if you decide to go abroad

Make sure you seek some advice from support agencies where you live.

Let support agencies or a trusted friend know when you are going and returning, where you are going, address, passport and flight details.

Keep your phone with you at all times and take some money with you.

Make sure you remove all traces of all contact with support agencies. Delete your computer history if you have been on support agencies websites. Use the internet in your local library, at an internet cafe or trusted friends

General advice

Try to keep records of what, when and where incidents happened.

Incidents could include:

  • Stalking or abusive telephone calls, malicious post or e-mails or face-to-face abuse.
  • You should also ask for the details of any witness to those incidents.
  • Write any information down as soon as possible, whilst still fresh in your memory.
  • Write down what the suspect looked or sounded like, including the clothes they worse and any distinguishing features. If you saw a vehicle record the make, model and colour. If possible try to remember the registration number.
  • Let the police know if anyone else perhaps your neighbours, saw or heard what happened.
  • Tell neighbours, friends and colleagues what is happening and ask them to keep a record of anything they see or hear you may also like to ask who regularly visit your home e.g. your postman/milkmen to keep a lookout too.
  • Evidence from a security camera in a plain view is acceptable evidence in court. However any evidence gathered without permission eg by using a hidden video camera is not admissible.

Paper correspondence

It is important to keep envelopes, as well as the content; envelopes can also be used as evidence.

Try to handle items as little as possible and keep them in a safe place or with a trusted friend.


Tape, record telephone conversations if you can and be sure to keep the tape.

Keep any stored voicemail messages or texts and write down numbers from mobile telephones.

Write down details of any text messages and the content of any calls, including the callers number and time of message/call was received. If calls are received on your landline or answer machine dial 1471 and write down callers number/time of call and any other details.

Keep any details in a safe place or with a trusted friend.

Other means of communication i.e. e-mails

Print and keep a file of copies of any emails.

Print and keep a file of copies of chat room conversations.

If necessary, download any stored material onto a new blank disc or CD and label each item with date and time.

Do not delete any relevant data. 

Do not tamper with any computer. Keep any copies/evidence etc in a safe place or with a trusted friend.