A group of some of New Zealand’s largest businesses have formed a partnership to provide workplace support for staff affected by family violence. ANZ, Countdown, Ernst & Young, Fonterra, Ricoh, Vodafone, and The Warehouse formed a working group in response to a call for action from the NZ Human Rights Commission. Together, they have created and shared tools so other NZ companies can support their staff.
Family violence is one of New Zealand’s top social issues, with statistics suggesting that one in three women will be affected by domestic violence in their lifetime. The workplace is often one of the only safe places for those seeking respite and support from abuse.
The group has leveraged their collective experience in developing and implementing staff support packages. They undertook a design-thinking process to develop a toolkit for businesses to use. The toolkit was implemented as a website hosted by the Human Rights Commission. The result is a guide for other organisations to create their own domestic violence support programmes, and a means for them to share issues and experiences.