When Domestic Violence Comes to the Workplace
Did you know that domestic violence costs United States businesses $3 to $5 billion annually?
Lost productivity, turnover, stress, absenteeism, increased health cost and employee safety just to name a few. Did you know that women are five times as likely as men to be victims of violence at work at the hand of an intimate partner? Often work can become the only place the assailant can locate and harm the victim.
Your workplace response can make a real difference.
How does your workplace currently respond to domestic violence? Managers are often the first to recognize and respond to domestic violence. A manager’s response is critical.
Managers: What would you say to an employee who left early because of upsetting calls from home at least four times in the last month? The employee has worked for your company for five years and she performs her job well.
- Does your company have a policy or a collection of policies that addresses domestic violence?
- What do regulatory agencies like OSHA, Department of Health, require employers to do to keep workplaces safe?
If you need more information of how to recognize, respond and support victims please check out our following workplace resources:
Click here: DV in the Workplace Brochure (PDF)
Click here: DV in the Workplace Poster (PDF)
Available Trainings for Managers
- How to recognize, address and support victims of domestic violence.
- Ten ways to creating a supportive workplace.
Click here: DV in the Workplace Managerial Booklet (PDF)
Available Trainings for Employees
- How to respond to a co-worker who is a victim of domestic violence.
- How to effectively serve a client who is a victim of domestic violence.
Click here: Family & Friends Guide (PDF)
Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
Quiz: Answer “Yes” or “No” to the following:
Yes/No: Sexual harassment is against the law?
Yes/No: The harasser and victim can be the same gender?
Yes/No: Employers must investigate all claims of sexual harassment?
Did you answer “yes” to all three questions?
What to learn more about reducing sexual harassment in your workplace?
Available Trainings for Managers
- Managers gain awareness and skills in addressing sexual harassment and supporting victims.
Available Training Programs for Employees
- Employee learns to recognize, respond and report harassment in their workplace. A pre and post test is included in our curriculum.
Click Below for More Resources:
Social Media Violence in the Workplace
Social Media Violence
What is social media violence? Using social media technology to commit acts of violence including sexual assault, sexual harassment, domestic violence, and workplace bullying.
Examples of social media violence include:
- Social networking sites allow members to post “rape joke” pages.
- 53-year-old said she was brutally raped by a man she was introduced to on match.com. (2011)
- Northhampton County man sent 1,000 threatening text messages to ex-girlfriend in a three day period.
- A news report in 2013 by Good Morning America: Ex-boyfriend post private photos of former girlfriend on Ex-Rated Revenge Site.
Costs to the Workplace
- 50% of sexual violence victims had to quit or were forced to leave their jobs in the year following their assaults due to the severity of their reactions.
- Your costs: recruitment, training, lost productivity, stress on existing employees.
The Women’s Center posted a Workplace Violence Survey in February 2012 and invited employees, managers and business owners to respond. 132 responded.
Here’s what we found:
33% of employees report being bullied or knowing a co-worker who was bullied on a social networking site.
Available Training for Employees
- Employees will learn social networking strategies for balancing personal and professional boundaries; identify potential risk including social media violence and increase their knowledge of safe social networking practices. One of our most requested programs.
Available Training for Managers
- Our program helps managers to identify potential consequences and strategies for balancing employee social networking while mitigating organizational risk. Managers learn a proactive approach to help employees avoid social networking abuse and learn how to support a targeted employee.
Improve your social networking IQ with these resources:
- Top Tips for Internet Safety at Work Tip Card
- Safer Social Networking
- Take Charge of Your Online Reputation Factsheet
- Safety Planning
Bullying is a form of workplace violence.
- Harrison Psychological Associates reports the business costs of bullying to employers where people are being harassed, within a two-year period, is more than $180 million in lost time and productivity.
- According to the Workplace Bullying Institute 2010 & 2007 U.S. Workplace Bullying Surveys, 35% of adult Americans (an est. 53.5 million Americans) report being bullied at work; an additional 15% witness it.
If your organization wants to establish a professional code of conduct expectation, learn how to recognize, respond and support all employees impacted by workplace bullying, this is the training for you.
Available Trainings Programs for Managers
- Managers will learn to define workplace violence, identify potential consequences, feel empowered to address and respond to workplace bullying, learn practical strategies designed to reduce workplace violence and increase their knowledge of anti-bullying workplace resources.
Available Trainings for Employees
- Our training helps employees to clearly identify workplace bullying and potential costs while providing strategies designed to assist all employees impacted by workplace bullying.
In response to numerous requests for workplace bullying training programs from nursing professionals, The Women’s Center developed a program specifically addressing Workplace Bullying in Healthcare. This program is one of our most requested training programs.
Workplace bullying in healthcare threatens the safety and well-being of both patients and staff. (Longo, 2010)
Nurses bullied by other nurses are twice as likely to leave their position and three times as likely to leave the nursing profession. (Johnson 2009)
The Joint Commission requires accredited facilities to implement policies to address disruptive behaviors among healthcare workers. (Longo, 2010)
- Johnson, S.L. & Rea, R.E. (2009). Workplace Bullying: Concerns for Nurse leaders. Journal of Nursing Administration, 39(2), 84-90.
- Longo, J., (Jan.31, 2010) “Combating Disruptive Behaviors: Strategies to Promote a health Work Environment” OJIN: Online Journal of Issues in Nursing Vol 15, No.1, Manuscript 5.
- 2010 WBI US Survey
- Kick Bully
- Bully OnLine
- Safe Workers
- Workplaces Against Violence in Employment
- Perioperative Nusing Orientation Resource Guide
- Bullying Among Nurses
Looking for a more in-depth understanding of workplace violence?
How do all these issues interface with one another?
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) defines workplace violence as any physical assault, threatening behavior or verbal abuse that occurs in the work setting. “Acts such as psychological trauma due to threats, obscene phone calls, an intimidating presence and harassment of any kind are included. Many employers also consider bullying and domestic violence to be forms of workplace violence.” Society for Human Resource Management, Dealing with Violence in the Workplace, Oct 2012.
New Employee Training Available:
Our presentation begins by encouraging staff to examine their perception of workplace violence, while learning to recognize, respond and report workplace violence. Resources are provided to empower staff impacted by workplace violence.
What are managers saying about our programs?
Click here: Workplace Training Brochure
Multi-Cultural Awareness Activities
Required 2012-2013 monthly activities for The Women’s Center Staff.
Culture is the way we see and process the world around us. It includes our beliefs, our attitudes, even the way we communicate with others. Our culture is shaped by our life experiences including the groups that we are a part of. Our memberships allow us to align with others with similar cultures and sometimes distance us from those with different cultures. Think about the groups that you belong to. For example, your birthplace, gender, race, language, nationality, abilities, income level, education, profession, religion, age, and sexual orientation, etc. How does your culture influence how you interact with others? Provide services to participants, customers, and clientele? Communicate with your co-workers, supervisor, and other professionals?
It is important to understand your culture and how it shapes your views both personally and professionally.
- All activities are designed to educate the staff at The Women’s Center, Inc.
- However, the activities are relevant for all employees in a variety of workplace settings.
August Activity: Multi-Cultural Awareness Quiz
September Activity: Chili and Chops Cookbook (PDF)
October Activity: Holiday Book (PDF)
November Activity: Cultural Violence Against Women (PDF)
December Activity: Workplace Culture Assessment (PDF)
January Activity: Who’s Who at TWC
February Activity: What do you see? (PDF)
March Activity: What is Your Communication Style (PDF)
April Activity: Body Language
May Activity: The Headless Woman
June Activity: Bring an Ethnic Food
Additional Support Services
Click here to view our newsletter: TWC Workplace News
Planning and Marketing
Let The Women’s Center help with the planning and marketing of your training event. Pre-marketing activities include sample articles that can be incorporated into your employee newsletter, website and emails. Informational brochures and workplace posters are available at no cost to employers.
Policy Review and Development
The Women’s Center has experience in assisting businesses to review and develop workplace policies that empower employers to address issues like domestic and sexual violence in the workplace. As a member agency of both Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape, we have a network of resources and professionals who help us to support employers through the policy review and development stages.
Managers who participate in our training programs feel better equipped to handle issues of domestic and sexual violence. After trainings, many managers call The Women’s Center to share their experience of responding to victims in the workplace. The Women’s Center also serves as a sounding board to those managers who want to continue to support the victim in the future. Together, we develop a plan that empowers both victim and manager. We encourage all managers to call 784-6632 to see how we can empower you and your workforce.
Managers are often the first person an employee tells about domestic violence. A manager may offer the employee a confidential location to call The Women’s Center for support. If a victim wants to continue with The Women’s Center but has limited time and resources, an advocate from The Women’s Center is available to come to your workplace and provide support. Employees and managers need to work together to make a request for an advocate to come to the workplace. For more information please call our administrative office at 784-6632 Monday-Friday 9-5pm and for evenings or weekends please call our 24-hour hotline 784-6631.