Cost of Intimate Partner Violence in the Workplace

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Today the Post-Gazette published the following letter to the editor by STANDING FIRM director Pat Cluss on the high cost of intimate partner violence in the workplace. FISA Foundation is quite proud to support STANDING FIRM’s work to help businesses address this crucial issue.

Partner violence also takes a toll on businesses

If you are a CEO or president of a company in southwestern Pennsylvania, I hope you have taken notice of the Centers for Disease Control report, National Intimate Partner Violence Survey, released last week, which reports the startling statistic that more than one in three women in the United States have experienced physical or sexual violence or stalking by an intimate partner.

Intimate partner violence is not just a serious social issue; it’s a critical and often hidden business issue as well. Business leaders unaware of the ways in which IPV walks through the door at work when victims (and perpetrators) are employed are missing an important and costly factor that likely is affecting their business bottom line.

Almost 12 million women and 4 million men missed at least one day of work or school as a result of IPV victimization. Along with increased absenteeism, the impact of IPV is felt in the workplace when victims come to work but are distracted or afraid or when perpetrators come to the workplace to harm or kill their employed victims. Other reports have described the impact on co-workers’ productivity of an employee’s victimization and the business impact of IPV perpetrators who often miss work, work distracted when on the job and misuse company resources to harass or stalk their victims.

STANDING FIRM: The Business Case to End Partner Violence is a regional initiative that alerts employers to the financial, safety and human costs of partner violence on the workplace and work force and arms them with tools for taking effective organizational action. We applaud the Post-Gazette for being one of 110 regional employers so far who have joined STANDING FIRM to take action on this issue in their workplaces. We encourage others in the regional business community to do the same. Go to www.standingfirmswpa.org for more information.

PATRICIA CLUSS
Director
STANDING FIRM
Oakland

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