Charles Sturt University (CSU) introduced new Domestic Violence Leave provisions that will assist employees experiencing trauma and challenge the stigma associated with domestic violence.
CSU Vice-Chancellor Professor Andrew Vann said the provisions have been lodged with Fair Work Australia for approval, but the University had taken the decision to bring it forward effective 1 December 2018.
Professor Vann said the policy enables an employee (or one supporting an immediate family member) experiencing domestic violence up to 15 days leave to attend legal, medical and other support services with a further five days available in special circumstances.
“Too often, victims are blamed and questioned for their role in causing the abuse, and it is stigmas like these that we need to call out and change.
“We are proud of these new provisions, and the role they play in challenging the stigmas of family violence by providing support for those who need it, when they need it the most,” Professor Vann said.
Professor Vann said there was still more work to be done by the University.
“We have a number of initiatives underway and planned into the future to ensure our staff feel safe and to ensure our community are informed enough to respond and address this issue, including targeted training and awareness raising across the campuses,” Professor Vann said.
Professor Vann said the United Nations’ 16 Days of Activism which includes the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on 25th November was a time to reflect on gendered drivers of family violence and significant impacts it has on women and children in particular.
“The UN has released sombre statistics that cause the University to reflect on the silence and stigma that have played a significant part in contributing to violence against women.”
“Through our ongoing gender equity initiatives, Charles Sturt University is committed to changing this situation and creating a safe and equal workplace for all. Stopping domestic violence is something we all need to contribute to,” Professor Vann said.