Council sets strong example on domestic violence support
Cessnock City Council has endorsed the adoption of a Family and Domestic Violence Protocol for its staff, demonstrating leadership in the community as one of the biggest employers.
Domestic violence in our community continues to be a huge issue. In the State Rankings for Crime, the Central Hunter Local Area Command ranks fifth in NSW for domestic violence assault incidents.
It is tragic statistics like these that formed part of the reason for Council putting this policy change forward, to both set a standard and help shift the culture of violence across the region.
Cessnock City Mayor and White Ribbon Ambassador, Councillor Bob Pynsent said the local statistics are harrowing and he is proud to see Council setting an example in our community.
“The current numbers for domestic violence cases are simply unacceptable and as a White Ribbon Ambassador, I was proud to be part of this unanimous Council decision.”
The new protocol will include up to 10 days per annum of paid Family and Domestic Violence Leave for employees affected by family and domestic violence.This will allow for employees to attend legal proceedings and appointments, relocation or making other safety arrangements, and other associated activities.
Employees who are affected by family and domestic violence may also be provided with a range of support options, including flexible work arrangements and referral to external support providers.
Council recognises that family and domestic violence is a complex social issue. The protocol focusses on providing a supportive environment for Council employees where they can feel safe and confident in seeking assistance for family and domestic violence.
The protocol will also include domestic violence awareness training to a number of employees to assist them understanding how to provide appropriate support to those affected within the workplace.