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Helping New Brunswickers Know the Law

What's New

September 2019

New safety planning APP connects women living with intimate partner violence to helpful services

Public Legal Education and Information Service of New Brunswick (PLEIS-NB) is pleased to announce that, in partnership with the New Brunswick Department of Public Safety, Victim Services, and the New Brunswick Community College (NBCC), we have developed a free safety planning app for women experiencing intimate partner violence in New Brunswick.

The app, called EVO, is based on the initial safety planning booklet and factsheets created by PLEIS-NB a couple of years ago. The app is now available on both Android and iOS in both French and English.

The name “EVO” refers to the fact that each step a woman takes to staying safer is part of her “EVOlution” to a violence-free life. The app helps to bridge the isolation and fear of engaging in help-seeking behaviour by helping women to connect directly to helpful services and make a personal safety plan.

Women using the app can review 16 risk factors that may signal danger in a relationship. They can identify which ones affect them, seek services, and make a personal safety plan to mitigate their risk of harm – even if they are still in the relationship. The more risk factors that exist, the greater the likelihood of future harm. Women are encouraged to address those situations they wish to while revisiting the plan frequently to update it. The app comes with a number of security features to reduce a woman’s risk of being discovered by her partner when she is using it.

EVO is particularly useful for rural/small town women as they can seek services via the safety and security of their cell phones or devices. The app offers a New Brunswick directory of services and supports the creation of a personalized list of contacts. Without such support, women may have concerns about the visibility of the helping services and the potential lack of confidentiality. This can be a barrier to getting help.

The app is intended to support self-assessment of risk, so it is not necessary to complete it with a service provider. However, research shows that the more supports that wrap around a woman who is safety planning, the more likely there will be a positive outcome. The new app encourages service providers and even family members to recognize risks and encourage women living with intimate partner violence to keep their safety plans updated and secure.

A promotional card about EVO is available to foster access to the app. For more information or to order cards for distribution, contact us at pleisnb@web.ca.

Please feel free to share this news with your clients and networks.

Get the free EVO App