Dorset based Safe Space consultancy says 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men will experience domestic abuse in their lifetimes. When these statistics are compared to how many staff you employ, as an employer you can begin to understand the prevalence of the problem, particularly when domestic abuse victims will suffer 35 incidents before reporting.
Many of these incidents will have prevented an employee from attending work on time or will have led to increased absences and possibly time off to attend medical appointments. As an employer you can begin to understand how domestic abuse can impact on the employee, their colleagues and the business.
Julie Johns owner of Safe Space added “If we are to gain greater awareness of this issue, which in my opinion is a societal problem, we need to understand why it happens, the root causes and why the incidents rise during certain times of the year and during trigger points within a relationship. Through awareness, education and training, employers can better support their employees by ensuring the workplace is a safe, non-judgemental environment and encourage employees who may be at risk to seek help sooner”
As we are nearing the festive season, Julie adds “it is important for employers to be aware this is often a high-risk time for those in toxic relationships. There are many pressures placed on families at this time of year i.e. financial pressures, spending more time together, consuming more alcohol, a need for everything to be perfect. Unfortunately, Christmas can end up being a nightmare for families living with a perpetrator of abuse. Christmas, financial pressure, spending time together is not the cause of domestic violence – the need for power and control is, Christmas and consuming alcohol provides the excuse”
Research shows domestic, sexual abuse and/or stalking has no social boundaries, it can affect anyone of any gender, within any relationship, age, background, religion or culture. Perpetrators can be found throughout society, working in all sorts of roles and often presenting as charming, charismatic personalities. Safe Space Consultancy recommend employers and employees, consider what can be done to improve the workplace and put the appropriate measures in place to reduce the risk of harm that abuse can cause and ensure everyone is safe.
To access further information on the Impact of Domestic Abuse & Stalking in the Workplace, please go to: www.safespaceconsultancy.org