Safe Haven Fact Sheet

What is a Safe Haven?

It is a place, usually a business, where youngsters, senior citizens and other individuals in need can go for help. Safe Havens are identified by window decals or posters provided by the City.

How do Safe Havens Work?

Essentially, a Safe Haven serves as a port in a storm for anyone in an emergency situation. For example, an elderly person who is confused or lost might enter a Safe Haven and ask for directions or to use the telephone. Injured people, frightened children, or stranded motorists might do the same.

What Obligations or Qualifications Must Employees of Businesses That are Safe Havens Have?

It requires very little to be an effective Safe Haven. Simple and/or advanced CPR training would be useful, but is not a prerequisite. Employees are encouraged to call the Police, the Fire Department, the school district, or other appropriate agency when they encounter people in need. Read more about Business Guidelines.

What is the Appropriate Response if Someone Asks for Help?

Invite the person to wait indoors while he or she explains the nature of the problem. Then allow them to make a phone call, or make one on their behalf, to police, parents, etc.

Is any Liability Involved?

Among Safe Havens in other cities โ€“ some have been in existence for more than 14 years โ€“ liability has never been a factor for any merchant when an individual has asked for assistance. The liability for opening your doors to people needing help is no greater than if you were to leave your business and attend to them on the sidewalk.

What is the Advantage of Being a Safe Haven?

Becoming a Safe Haven makes your business a more integral part of the community in which it operates. And being seen as a caring neighbor is good for your business. Even though many merchants already offer a helping hand, the window poster or decal is a more visible sign of your support for the community and the people who live and work there.