Domestic violence in the workplace is a real issue that impacts the well-being and productivity of employees. It’s not just a personal problem. It’s a workplace problem. “Current or former intimate partners accounted for nearly 33% of women killed in US workplaces between 2003 and 2008,” according to a report on Workplace Homicides Among U.S. Women.
Employers lose $77.9 billion annually as a direct result of domestic violence, according to research by the National Library of Medicine.
In this episode of Managing Well with Tonya Ladipo, Melody Gross, founder of Courageous SHIFT, joins us to discuss the impacts of domestic violence in the workplace. Melody shares her personal experience as a survivor of domestic violence and highlights the gaps in support she encountered at work.
- “Current or former intimate partners accounted for nearly 33% of women killed in US workplaces between 2003 and 2008.”
(Source: Workplace Homicides Among U.S. Women: The Role of Intimate Partner Violence)
- Employers lose $77.9 billion annually as a direct result of domestic violence.
(Source: The Impact of Domestic Violence in the Workplace)
- Organizations can proactively impact domestic violence by closing the gender-based pay gap. Equitable pay provides more financial security and the ability to leave violent relationships.
- We need to broaden how we think about violence. Domestic violence is more than just physical assault. It’s also verbal, emotional, and financial abuse.
- Employers don’t need to “fix” domestic violence but they can be aware of it and offer resources and support.
- Though it may be uncomfortable to have the conversation, don’t ignore the signs of domestic violence.
- What thoughts or reactions arise when you think about attempting to support or intervene on behalf of a colleague who is experiencing domestic violence?
- What can you or your organization do to better support employees experiencing domestic violence?
- What can you or your organization do to intervene with employees who may be perpetrators of domestic violence?
- Provide annual “Domestic Violence 101” or Trauma Informed Workplace training. Yearly comprehensive training allows individuals to recognize the signs of DV and obtain resources and support as needed.
- Seek guidance from experts to create a domestic violence workplace policy. Pursue feedback from staff and ERGs to ensure policies are inclusive and realistic. Regularly review and communicate policies with staff.
- Conduct a pay audit to ensure each employee receives a living wage and equitable compensation. Pay particular attention to eliminating gender and race-based pay disparities.
- Why Family & Domestic Violence is a Workplace Issue
- Domestic Violence and the Workplace, Cornell University Policy & Toolkit
- Domestic Violence Employer Resource, Safe Alliance Organization
- Why Is It So Difficult To Leave
- When Domestic Violence Comes to Work
- Model Workplace Policy – Workplaces Respond to Domestic and Sexual Violence
The Managing Well podcast, with host Tonya Ladipo, talks about wellness in the workplace with people leaders, mental health professionals, HR experts, and more. Click the link to subscribe to the podcast and get the latest episodes.