Help is available at all COVID-19 traffic light settings

Feb 21, 2022 | News

Stay safe in your bubble and while isolating

  • If someone makes you fearful, threatens, harasses or hurts you, seek help as soon as possible.
  • Support services are still open.
  • You can leave your bubble/isolation if you’re worried about your safety.
  • If you or someone else is in danger, call the Police on 111. Police take family violence and sexual abuse seriously.
  • If you can’t speak when dialling 111, follow the operator’s instructions.
  • If you can’t call for help, get out of the house, and ask a neighbour or someone else to call 111.

Family Violence Specialist Helplines

For anyone experiencing family violence, worried about their own abusive behaviour, or supporting someone else in these situation, family violence and sexual violence support lines are open for people to call, email or text.

  • Shine Helpline – now 24/7: 0508 744 633 OR chat online with Helpline staff at
  • Are You OK – 9am to 11pm, every day: 0800 456 450
  • Women’s Refuge – 24/7: 0800 733 843, 24/7 (for women only)
  • Help via online chat through Women’s Refuge Shielded Site without leaving a browser history– click on this icon in the footer of,, and many other websites

For anyone worried about their own abusive behaviour:

For anyone who experiences sexual harm:

  • Safe to Talk – 24/7 (sexual harm helpline): 0800-044-334 OR text 4334 – 24/7. Chat online at

We also have some important advice for New Zealanders who are supporting someone else who is experiencing family violence or who is worried about their own abusive behaviour:

  • DO NO HARM. Well-intentioned efforts to communicate with someone living with an abusive partner may end up further endangering them. ALWAYS be careful about communicating with someone at home who you know or suspect is experiencing domestic violence. Always assume that an abusive partner is hearing or seeing your communication, and avoid alerting them that that you know or suspect the abuse. If you need advice about how to help someone you are concerned about, ring Shine’s Helpline or one of the family violence helplines listed above.
  • If you are supporting someone else, even if it’s not safe to be specific about your concerns with them, it is helpful to stay in touch with them however that may be possible and safe to do. Staying in touch with people outside of their bubble may help to provide emotional support, distraction, and possibly time when they will be safer from abuse.
  • Remember:

    1. Family violence is abuse within a family relationship, which is defined by NZ law as intimate partners or ex-partners, any family or whānau relationship, anyone sharing a household (flatmates) or any two people with a close, personal relationship. Family violence is not just physical violence, but a range of behaviours that have the intention or effect of coercing (making someone do something using force or threats) or controlling someone.

    2. Family violence is not OK, but it is OK to ask for help.

    3. It’s OK to ask for help whether you are experiencing family violence or worried about your own abusive behaviour. You can also ring any of the above helplines for advice about supporting someone else.

Employers can also find advice from Shine’s DVFREE workplace programme about supporting their employees experiencing family violence during lockdown here.