Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer

Monday, October 06, 2008

Domestic VIolence - a Lurking Issue

Articles, like Domestic violence often bleeds over into workplace from the Birmingham Business Journal, crop up ever so often. Almost every time I see one, it makes me think this continues to be one of those hidden issues that some day is going to come to the forefront on employers' radar screens.

Violence in the workplace is the most horrific aspect, but I can't help think that productivity issues are more prevalent. Many of the potential amendments to the FMLA include domestic violence as a trigger. When legislation starts recognizing it as an employment issue, may be the time it starts being more visible. If you haven't given it any thought, it might be a good idea.

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You are absolutely correct -- while it is certainly a workplace safety issue, DV as a workplace issue should concern employers from a productivity, absenteeism, presenteeism, turnover, and healthcare perspective. It is in an employer's enlightened self-interest to address this issue to guard its greatest workplace asset -- its employees. The Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence ( has great resources and articles available to employers to help with this.
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