Resources for domestic violence in the Canadian workplace: Results of a pan-Canadian survey
Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health
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Domestic violence (DV) is increasingly recognized as an occupational health and safety issue, however little is known about the DV-specific resources/supports available in workplaces. A sample of 8,041 Canadian workers who were currently employed responded to online survey questions on the types of DV-related information they received in the workplace, their awareness of DV-related workplace resources, and provided suggestions for resource improvements. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, chi-squared test, and content analysis. Overall, 42% of respondents had received DV-related information from their union and/or employer; most took the form of training/education, written, or electronic information. Many (43%) respondents reported being aware of employer and/or union-provided resources/obligations related to DV. Key suggestions for workplace improvements included increased workplace education/training, efforts to raise awareness and reduce stigma, links to social/community services, workplace policies and special accommodations such as schedule flexibility, and a generally more supportive work culture. Some differences by DV exposure, gender, and employment type emerged. Although many Canadian workers in this sample had received DV information at their workplace and/or were aware of such resources, most had/were not. Enhanced resources, and communication of these to workers, remain a priority, especially as new legislation specific to this issue emerges.