What is a safety plan?

Maybe you’ve heard the phrase “safety plan” before and you’re not quite sure what it means. Well, a safety plan is a resource that is created to assist when a person is in crisis. A crisis may look different for each individual but the main goal of the safety plan is to have a set of guidelines to help avoid an intense suicidal crisis.

A suicidal crisis is “a suicide attempt or an incident in which an emotionally distraught person seriously considers or plans to imminently attempt to take his or her own life” (Suicide Prevention Resource Center, n.d.).

The safety plan will include things like emergency contact numbers of professionals or agencies, contact numbers of support systems, coping strategies, and protective factors. To view an example of a safety plan click the download link below.

The first thing to do to implement a safety plan is to create a safety plan. Once you’ve created the safety plan you should keep readily available and give a copy to a close friend, family member, and your therapist to have in case of a crisis.

Developing a safety plan is an effective way to provide a set of guidelines for yourself and others to help whenever a suicidal crisis may arise. If you are interested in learning more about safety plans please feel free to view the resources provided below and don’t hesitate to contact a mental health professional for additional support.

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