Make Safety a Priority for Families and Self

Practice Area 2

Home and community-based visits give you the opportunity to assess any risks to the child or the family. These visits may also pose a risk to you. Take issues related to safety very seriously and follow the precautions and practices below.

Examples of How to Use This Practice

Ask each family if they have any safety concerns in their home or neighborhood. If the family is concerned about safety, discuss ways to help everyone feel as safe as possible (e.g., participating in block/neighborhood watch programs, identifying people to contact and/or alternative locations for visits if the family is feeling threatened or unsafe, reminding families to keep weapons and firearms in the home locked up for safety).

Get to know families' neighborhoods and communities. Be aware of your surroundings to assess your own safety, especially when you're in unfamiliar settings. For areas with higher concerns for safety, consider conducting home visits in pairs. Share your visiting schedule and details with your supervisor. Stay in touch with colleagues by phone, text, or email. Also, work with your supervisor to establish safety and crisis plans.

Reflection Questions

  • How can you talk to family members about their physical and emotional safety needs?
  • To fully address issues of safety, what safety-related community resources and services will you refer families to?
  • What community resources do you need to know more about  or establish a stronger relationship with  to successfully refer families to appropriate services?
  • What safety concerns and strategies are important to discuss with your colleagues and supervisors?