Tararua employers are urged to attend a workshop focusing on domestic violence to be held in Dannevirke at the end of the month.

The workshop is one of two being held at Tararua REAP.

Tararua REAP manager Claire Chapman says the event will cover general awareness of domestic violence and how it impacts on the workplace and employer obligations under the new Domestic Violence Victims Protection Act.

"This is a great opportunity for employers to understand what their obligations are under the act. For example, a person impacted by family violence is entitled to 10 days annual leave.


"Some employers may think this is just a means for workers to take time off but many employers may be the first person someone affected by family violence to speak about it. How the employer reacts in this first instance can be crucial," said Chapman.

Statistics show domestic violence is a New Zealand epidemic and affects most workplaces in terms of staff wellbeing and productivity, but the problems are often hidden.

Figures show that every year, New Zealand workers are killed or seriously injured by an abusive partner or family member, which can have a devastating impact on co-workers.

Shine, a national domestic abuse charity, has made recommendations that align with new employer requirements under the Domestic Violence Protection Act and these will be clarified as part of the workshop.

It will also outline what constitutes a best practice workplace response to domestic violence and give an overview of providing safety and support to staff experiencing domestic violence.

It will also outline the steps to prepare the workplace to manage staff who perpetrate domestic violence.

The workshop, which will be held on Tuesday, August 27, will run from 5.30pm to 7pm and will include a question and answer session.

A second workshop the following day will be facilitated by Shine's DVFREE co-ordinator and senior trainer Pip Ross and will provide training for people working in support or education services whose clients may be exposed to domestic violence.


Shine was founded in 1990 and is a specialist domestic violence organisation that provides a range of effective, practical services to stop domestic violence, support victims and reform those using violence.

DVFREE is Shine's workplace programme that works with employees to create workplaces that are safe and supportive for staff experiencing domestic violence.

Ross says it's the first time the training has been brought to Tararua.

Ross delivers domestic violence training to a range of social service sector professionals as well as first responders and managers from a range of employers.

She has worked in the humanitarian protection sector with the Red Cross and UN Women for more than a decade, mostly on preventing and responding to violence against women and children in post-disaster and complex migration settings.

In locations ranging from Greece to the Philippines to several Pacific Islands, Ross developed and delivered training for volunteers and professionals, including Australian Defence Force personnel, Police, journalists and humanitarian practitioners.

She has assisted with developing masters-level programmes in international development and humanitarian response and undergraduate law and international studies programmes.

Ross was also responsible for monitoring humanitarian standards in refugee camps and detention sites; developing information and analysis systems for protection risks and incidents; developing child protection policies, reporting procedures and codes of conduct, and advocacy on matters of humanitarian concerns.

This session will run from 9am until 3.30pm and will be held at the MCI offices in Gordon St.