16 Days Against Violence Campaign Day 13

Jobs for women and awareness for front line workers

Lack of adequate income and financial insecurity keeps many women trapped in violent relationships, and prevents them successfully establishing a new home/life once they leave.

McAuley Community Services for Women says that effective ways of retaining workforce engagement and developing new employment opportunities are critical to easing and ending the impact of family violence on women.

“We know from our experience that part time, casual and low paid work are the most typical patterns of women’s employment,” CEO Jocelyn Bignold said.

“Our view is that the Commonwealth Employment Service be tailored to actively support women experiencing family violence at the time when they need it, irrespective of whether it will result in an immediate employment ‘outcome’."

McAuley Community Services for Women is also calling on government to fund community development programs for different cultural groups, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and children, so that they can apply their own solutions to preventing and eliminating family violence

“We are pleased to see that the Federal Government has joined forces with 1800Respect to launch a national campaign aimed at frontline workers,” Ms Bignold said.

Ms Bignold called on the Federal Government to fund McAuley Community Services to replicate and extend its Engage to Change employer education program across Australia.

“We know that women are being performance managed out of the workplace when crisis occurs. This often leads to no reference being supplied, impacting on women’s chances of securing future employment,” Ms Bignold said.

“Better understanding by employers and colleagues about the prevalence and impact of family violence on their staff, workforce productivity and options to retain and support staff experiencing family violence are vital.”