Domestic abuse is a workplace issue

A red heart containing the text 'love shouldn't hurt' surrounded by phrases relating to abuseAs we reported back in July 2020, the workplace can be an invaluable lifeline for people experiencing domestic abuse. Employers also have a duty of care and a legal responsibility to provide a safe and effective work environment, and tackling domestic abuse is an integral part of this.

The Domestic Abuse: Toolkit for Employers has recently been updated to include new case studies, initiatives and information on the recently passed Domestic Abuse Act.

Published by Business in the Community, the toolkit is sponsored by the Insurance Charities and supported by the Employers’ Initiative on Domestic Abuse. It recommends a ‘four Rs’ approach by employers:

  1. Recognise – help everyone in the company to recognise the signs of abuse and understand that it is a workplace issue that everyone can play a part in tackling.
  2. Respond – have policies in place for what happens when a member of the team discloses that they are being abused.
  3. Refer – know where and how to refer people for help, information and support.
  4. Record – keep accurate details of what is said as this can be used as evidence if the police become involved.

The toolkit contains information and advice about how to spot domestic abuse, how to set out workplace policies and how to take appropriate action. It also gives practical examples of workplace support and how to start difficult conversations. The full toolkit can be downloaded from the Business in the Community website.

For more information and resources on domestic abuse, and other aspects of mental and physical health at work, visit our Sandwell workplace wellbeing page.