When we think about domestic violence, we usually think about what happens in the home. That’s logical, because we envision families in their homes.
But domestic violence also has a profound effect on today’s workplaces. In fact, 74 percent of domestic violence victims report that their abuser has harassed them on the job. Plus, the spillover from domestic violence costs employers more than $7 million in lost work days per year, not to mention decreased productivity, higher health insurance claims, and potential liability when an abuser attacks a victim on the job. There’s also the impact these situations have on other employees who witness or suffer as a result of the abuse.
That’s why it’s important for employers to understand domestic violence and what they can do to help. It’s also why Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics in Plainfield invited Sheltering Wings to their monthly meeting. They wanted staff supervisors and managers to be able to recognize the signs of domestic violence and know the right ways to intervene. We explained:
- the behavior patterns a manager might see
- how to help an employee who has confided in them
- what to do when an employee is clearly being abused but won’t say anything
- how to incorporate domestic violence into their Employee Assistance Plans
- ways to protect the business and its employees
- how to ensure that the workplace is a safe place for victims
Siemens employs more than 300 employees in a warehouse environment, and the nearly 20 supervisors who participated in our brief training session listened carefully and asked plenty of questions. Several of them even followed up by coming out to tour the shelter and asking about ways they could partner with Sheltering Wings to support our important work.
As one supervisor noted in an email, “Thank you so much for coming today and speaking with our team about Domestic Violence. You provided excellent background information and including your personal experiences made it real for everyone who had not had experience with domestic violence.”
Has your company taken steps to address domestic violence and its effects upon the workplace? If you’re a business owner or manager, contact us, and we’ll be happy to come out and educate your team. If you’re an employee who’s concerned, please share this message with your supervisor or Human Resources department.
Bringing an end to domestic violence demands the involvement of everyone in the community …and that includes the business community. Thank you for your generous, prayerful support and everything you do for the women and children we serve.