In cases of domestic violence or serious threat of domestic violence, the mayor may impose a temporary restraining order. This ban provides a cooling off period during which counseling services are initiated. During the restraining order, the perpetrator may not enter the home or have contact with the occupants of the home for 10 days. The ban can be extended for up to 18 days.

Domestic violence includes:

  • physical violence
  • sexual violence
  • emotional violence
  • child abuse
  • sexual abuse
  • neglect
  • threat
  • stalking
  • honor killing

How does it work?

Once the mayor has imposed a temporary restraining order:

  • Must the offender immediately leave the residence where the domestic violence occurred.
  • May the offender not have contact with the victim (such as the partner, children and others involved). Sometimes a supervised visitation time with the perpetrator is arranged for the children.
  • May the offender not enter the house or near the house.
  • Must let the offender know to the mayor how and where he or she can be reached.
  • Does Social Services (Safe Home) contact the offender and victim to schedule a meeting between them and Social Services.

Does the offender not comply with the restraining order? Then he or she may face jail time or community service.

End of restraining order

The mayor can revoke the temporary restraining order at any time. Reasons may include:

  • The threat to the victim is gone.
  • The offender agrees to the assistance offered.

Before the mayor extends or revokes a restraining order, the offender and victim are called. They are asked what they think of the extension or revocation.

What should you do?

If you are a victim of violence by a (former) partner, family member, relative or family friend, report it to the police as soon as possible. Victims, witnesses, neighbors, friends or relatives can also do so.

Safe Home provides information and advice on how to stop the violence. More information can be found at link) or call 0800-2000 directly.