The National Retail Association has joined forces with the Palaszczuk Government to launch a Domestic Violence Retailer Support Program to assist small to medium businesses in addressing domestic and family violence.
Dominique Lamb, CEO of the National Retail Association, said that retailers can play a part in combatting domestic and family violence even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Retail has always been one of the biggest employers of women in Australia and women represent the vast majority of those affected by domestic violence.”
Ms Lamb noted that domestic violence was not just a community issue, but a workplace issue, as it can impact a staff member’s ability to do their job and can even create risk at the workplace.
“The retail industry has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, but it doesn’t stop us caring about the welfare of our team members. In fact, the need for additional resources and support is even more critical, with evidence of domestic and family violence reports increasing due to isolation.”
Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Di Farmer said the $100,000 investment by the Palaszczuk Government for the Program aimed to strengthen and support businesses to respond to the needs of their workforces.
Ms Farmer said the funding partnership comprised $60,000 from the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women and $40,000 from the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training.
“With women making up more than half of the 1.2 million people employed in retail across Australia, there is a real need to equip businesses with the tools they need to address domestic violence,” she said.
“Too many workers lose their jobs as a result of domestic violence. That number can be reduced if we work together to educate workplaces on how they can support their workers.”
“Our investment will help boost awareness among employees of what domestic and family violence is and how they can get help if they need it.”
Minister for Employment, Small Business, Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman said that the partnership will deliver vital support for small businesses and their employees who are affected by domestic and family violence.
“Everyone must play their part and it’s great to see the National Retail Association assisting and educating retailers to better respond to this issue,” Ms Fentiman said.
The Domestic Violence Retailer Support Program includes a dedicated website, hotline, webinars, podcasts and online campaign aimed at educating Queensland retailers, particularly small to medium sized businesses, about how domestic violence can impact the workplace, and provide tools and resources to help businesses address and respond to this issue.
If you are the victim or perpetrator of domestic or family violence:
• In an emergency, call the police on Triple Zero (000)
• DVConnect Womensline – phone 1800 811 811 (24 hours, 7 days a week)
• DVConnect Mensline – phone 1800 600 636 (9am to 12 midnight, 7 days per week).