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Dancing CEO’s in the fight against domestic violence

April 22, 2016

Last Friday night saw Brisbane’s leading CEOs swap the boardroom for the City Hall dance floor to raise funds for Dancing CEO’s, an annual gala event to support Women’s Legal Service and the prevention of domestic violence. The National Retail Association (NRA) was proud to be an event sponsor of Dancing CEOs and support Women’s Legal Service in the work they do for domestic violence. The total amount raised was $219,000 with proceeds going towards ensuring that more women who need to seek safety and gain access to justice can be provided with assistance and support.

It is important to note that domestic violence is a workplace issue. Almost two-thirds of women affected by domestic violence in Australia are in some form of paid employment. Domestic Violence can therefore directly affect a victim’s or survivor’s participation, performance and productivity at work. Some perpetrators will also make abusive phone calls, emails and sometimes they may present at the workplace.

The NRA encourages our members to be leaders in the campaign against domestic violence by:

  • Identifying domestic violence as a workplace issue: By creating an environment where employees feel they are able to discuss their experiences of domestic violence, businesses also send a clear message that abusive and violent behaviour will not be tolerated in the workplace.
  • Providing a supportive environment for victims and survivors of domestic violence: Some examples of organisations taking steps to support employees experiencing domestic violence include offering flexible working arrangements, special leave, the possibility of working in another location, or providing support information through workplace training and induction.
  • Recognising and addressing abusive behaviour of employees: With violent behaviour often spilling over from the home into the workplace, businesses can play an important role in recognising abusive behaviour in the workplace and facilitating behavioural change with the identification of appropriate programs and assisting people to attend those programs.
  • Providing education and training on domestic violence: By educating employees about how domestic violence affects the workplace, how to support employees affected by domestic violence as well as how to address and respond to abusive behaviours in the workplace, employers can take a leadership role and help to facilitate change.

From discussions with NRA members, it is evident that many retailers want to be proactive in this space and be part of an integrated response to domestic violence.

For more information on how your business can assist in reducing the prevalence of violence against women, contact the NRA’s HR and legal team on 1800 RETAIL (738 245).

The National Retail Association are also excited to announce that our Melbourne office will soon be moving into the Melbourne CBD (details provided soon).  We look forward to being in a more central location and welcoming our members to our fresh new premises shortly.

Have a great week.

Dominique Lamb, Principal of NRA Legal and Director of Legal

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