Family violence is one of NZ’s biggest social concerns and Fonterra is tackling the issue head on with a progressive plan to make it a safe space for all of its people.
The initiative provides support for people in the workplace suffering from the effects of family violence. The workplace is often a safe place away from the violence at home, where a sense of value and worth can be maintained, and help sought away from the scrutiny of the abuser. Fonterra has created an environment where people can talk about family violence, and know how to get confidential support if they need it.
Support includes additional paid leave (up to 10 days additional leave for victims and up to 3 days for supporters of victims); support for ‘users’ of violence to attend rehabilitation; time during business hours to seek support; 30 employees formally trained as ‘first responders’; safety planning; online resources; communications to all managers; and third party specialist support partnerships.
Feedback from staff has been positive. The process is highly confidential and no register is kept for people who have asked for help. The programme is available to over 12,000 staff in NZ.