New website to assist businesses to address family violence in the workplace

Image: Pixabay

A new website has been launched to assist workplaces to address family violence. The website was developed by the Human Rights Commission and seven large New Zealand employers.

The website, www.business
workingtoendfamily
violence.co.nz
, provides information to support workplaces develop and implement a family violence workplace policy. This includes:

  • Background information
  • What to include in a policy
  • Where to get external support
  • What to think about when implementing a policy
  • How to get started
  • Resources, research and examples.

A family violence workplace policy template is also available. The template has been developed by seven of New Zealand’s largest employers (The Warehouse Group, ANZ NZ, Countdown, Vodafone NZ, Fonterra, Ricoh New Zealand, and EY) and the Human Rights Commission. The template includes three options or levels of provisions to address family violence.

Human Rights Commission Equal Opportunities Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue said:

“The model policy is a template that offers employers three levels of choices for a family violence policy. By choosing among the best-practice options, every employer can create a family violence policy that works for their staff and workplace.

Family violence doesn’t respect boundaries between home and the workplace. Ensuring that the affected employee is safe and supported at work is good for productivity and morale. It will also help break the cycle of abuse by providing safe haven where employees can gain confidence and take steps to break the abusive cycle."

The model policy and other website material will be updated as required to meet any new requirements of the Domestic Violence - Victims’ Protection Bill that is currently before Parliament.

Related news

The Domestic Violence - Victims' Protection Bill passed the Committee of the whole House on 27 June 2018. The National Party has dropped their support for the bill. The bill is now awaiting its third reading in Parliament. The bill would enhance workplace protections for victims of domestic violence by amending five Acts. Media reported the bill is expected to come up for third reading in late July.

For background information, see our most recent news stories on the domestic violence workplace legislation:

Justice Committee reports on domestic violence workplace protections bill

Submissions open on domestic violence workplace bill; new research on economic abuse.

Further information

Support for employers to address family violence as a workplace issue is also available from:

  • Shine's DVFREE - offers a range of services including consulting on policy development, awareness raising activity and training for staff
  • Women's Refuge's Responsive Workplaces - offers consultation, advice, support, guidance, and expert knowledge to assist organisations to develop policies

For research about supporting victims in the workplace and Aotearoa New Zealand, see NZFVC Issues Paper #7: Intimate partner violence and the workplace (2014).

Selected and related media

'Family violence doesn’t respect boundaries between home and the workplace', Human Resources Director NZ, 04.07.2018

All businesses will benefit from the Domestic Violence Bill, Press Release: Shine, Scoop, 29.06.2018

Bill to allow domestic violence victims 10 days leave close to passing, Māori Television, 28.06.2018

Domestic violence bill will pass without National support, Stuff, 28.06.2018

Domestic violence bill unfair to small businesses - National, One News, 28.06.2018

Step forward for Bill giving 10 days' leave to domestic violence victims, Newshub, 27.06.2018

Commission welcomes progress on family violence legislation, Press Release: Human Rights Commission, Scoop, 14.06.2018

Domestic Violence Victims’ Protection Bill must be supported, Press Release: NZNO (New Zealand Nurses Organisation), Scoop, 13.06.2018

Investing within the workplace to break the cycle of family violence, National Business Review, 12.06.2018