Help for victims of domestic abuse

Are you a victim of domestic abuse? Ontario Works can help you.

If you are living in a violent or abusive situation, Ontario Works can help you by:

  • providing you with financial assistance, and
  • helping you find a job.

What you can do? Call your nearest Ontario Works office.

When you call your nearest Ontario Works office, you will be put in touch with someone who can help you.

Tell them that you are in an abusive situation.

They will meet with you within 24 hours at a location that is safe for you.

What you can expect when you call

  • We will believe you and we will treat you with respect.
  • We can help you develop a safety plan as a first step.
  • We will help you to connect with supports and services like emergency shelter, legal help, affordable housing and counselling.
  • We can help you move out immediately. Then we may be able to help you set up a new home in the community.
  • You will not be asked to get financial support from your abuser.
  • If you have a job, you may still be able to get some financial assistance from Ontario Works, depending on how much you are earning.
  • You will receive services in French, if required. If you don't speak either English or French, we will provide an interpreter.

Financial assistance

If you qualify, Ontario Works can provide you with money to help you cover the costs of your basic needs (such as food) and housing costs.

The amount of money you may receive from Ontario Works will depend on your:

  • family size
  • income
  • assets, and
  • housing costs.

Help finding a job

Ontario Works can give you practical help to prepare for and find a job. We will work with you to determine what you need to become employed and will help you develop a plan based on your skills, experience and circumstances. Here are some of the services that may be available to you:

  • workshops on looking for work, résumé writing and preparing for an interview
  • referrals to job counselling or training
  • information about who's hiring in your community, and
  • access to telephones, faxes and computers.

Other ways we can help

If you qualify for Ontario Works, you and your children may also be eligible to receive a variety of other benefits such as coverage for:

  • prescription drugs
  • dental care, and
  • eyeglasses.


If you are in immediate danger, call the : Assaulted Women's Helpline

Toll free (Ontario)
1-866-863-7868 TTY

Greater Toronto Area (GTA)
(416) 863-0511
(416) 863-7868 TTY

#7233 on your Bell Mobility phone

This provincewide helpline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. It offers crisis counselling and referrals for women needing a shelter, legal advice or other supports. This service is free and is available in over 100 different languages, including 17 Aboriginal languages.

Learn more