Today, Thursday 28 May 2020, Wandle Housing Association (Wandle) is the recipient of the Everyone’s Business Award, presented by charity Hestia, recognising their efforts to support employees enduring domestic abuse.
1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men will experience domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime. 75% of those experiencing domestic abuse are targeted at work.
To achieve the Everyone’s Business Award, Wandle had to meet a range of criteria to demonstrate what they were doing to support their employees. The criteria include a domestic abuse policy for staff experiencing domestic abuse, specialist domestic abuse awareness training and supporting a network of champions within the organisation who can signpost to support. The awarding panellists include consultants from across business and human resources sectors as well as Public Health England.
The accreditation forms part of Everyone’s Business, a programme of support to employers delivered in partnership between Hestia, UK SAYS NO MORE, Employers Initiative on Domestic Abuse, The Corporate Alliance Against Domestic Abuse, Cardiff Women’s Aid, Surviving Economic Abuse, Woman’s Trust, Bulbshare and TecSOS.
Since the programme launched, Everyone’s Business has supported over 60 employers and reached over 300,000 employees with domestic abuse messaging.
Patrick Ryan, Chief Executive at Hestia said:
“Businesses have a unique role to play in breaking the silence around domestic abuse and ensuring victims can access the help and support they need. The Covid-19 crisis has compounded that, with employers now often the only point of contact for victims. For too long domestic abuse has been nobody’s business. We are delighted to be working in partnership with employers across the UK to make sure it becomes Everyone’s Business.”
Tracey Lees, Chief Executive at Wandle Housing Association said:
“Our focus has always been on providing the right support to our residents. As we worked on the policy, we realised that with 1 in 4 women identified as a victim of domestic abuse, members of our staff would surely be included in that number and so in need of help. It quickly also became clear that one policy would not be effective in addressing the needs of both residents and staff, so we set about creating an external policy to support our residents and an internal policy targeting the needs of staff. I commend the tremendous effort by the team at Wandle to build on their understanding of the issues and develop these two excellent policies. We’re very proud to be recognised for this special award and are extremely grateful to Hestia for the support and training they have delivered at Wandle.”
Claire Bethel, who chaired the panel, said:
“I am delighted that we were able to award four companies this year with the Everyone’s Business accreditation – Balfour Beatty, Wandle Housing, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Lincolnshire and Hestia. Each of the companies had made considerable efforts to meet the exacting standards which show that domestic abuse experienced by any member of staff is taken seriously within the organisation and that a comprehensive response is available. Any employee in those organisations who is experiencing domestic abuse can be assured that help and support will be forthcoming and that they are no longer have to endure abuse alone. Line managers will be trained to know what to look for and, where a member of staff discloses abuse and is seeking help, to provide an appropriate and sympathetic response.”