Manitoba wants employers to raise awareness of domestic violence

"Domestic violence doesn't stay in the home," says province's labour minister


Manitoba is taking the battle against domestic violence into the workplace.

The province has launched a new information campaign designed to create awareness and help workplaces to assist in breaking the cycle of domestic violence.

“Many people facing domestic violence spend eight hours a day in the workplace, making it an excellent place to get help and support,” said Nancy Allan, Manitoba’s minister of labour and immigration and minister responsible for the status of women. “Domestic violence doesn’t stay in the home. It is an issue that affects the workplace, taking a toll on the safety and well-being of employees and the bottom line of employers. It can cause a drop in productivity, an increase in absenteeism and a greater risk of violence in the workplace.”

The campaign, called Domestic Violence Prevention: A Workplace Initiative, includes a pamphlet, a resource guide for employers and washroom stall door stickers with a province-wide information hotline number.

Sponsored by Manitoba Labour and Immigration, the Workers Compensation Board, Manitoba Liquor Control Commission, Manitoba Lotteries Foundation and City of Winnipeg, the campaign is designed to:

•increase awareness and understanding of domestic violence and its effect on the workplace;

•provide additional opportunities for customers and employees to access resources through a province-wide toll free number;

•improve employers' understanding of how employees affected by domestic violence can be supported in the workplace; and

•help businesses become part of the solution to a complex problem.

Information packages are being mailed out to more than 2,000 workplaces across Manitoba and the material will also be posted online at www.gov.mb.ca/wd.

"Family violence is not a private matter. With education and support, workplaces can play a vital role in acknowledging the dangers," said Allan. "Employees may be more willing to seek help through work when they know they're in a supportive environment."

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