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Domestic Violence in the Workplace NFFNN NFF @ Work in Ontario

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Domestic Violence in the Workplace NFFNN NFF @ Work in Ontario. What everyone needs to know. Why are we here?. In almost every case of domestic homicide, we found that the people around the victim knew what was going on – but didn’t know what to do about it… Al O’Marra

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Domestic Violence in the Workplace

NFFNNNFF @ Work in Ontario

What everyone needs to know...

why are we here
Why are we here?

In almost every case of domestic homicide, we found that the people around the victim knew what was going on – but didn’t know what to do about it…

Al O’Marra

(Former) Chief Counsel Coroner’s Office of Ontario

Neighbours, Friends and Families have a crucial role to play in preventing woman abuse

You can learn about the warning signs of woman abuse and you can learn how to help

You can make the brochures and safety cards available to people you know

Key Messages

Communities working together can make a difference in abused women’s and children’s lives

Talking to abusive men is critical to ending woman abuse

Abusive behaviour won’t go away by itself. There are services to help men who abuse

Key Messages

how can i support her
How Can I Support Her?
  • Talk to her about what you see and assure her that you are concerned
  • Tell her you believe her and that it is not her fault
  • Provide information about safety


safety planning for women
Safety Planning for Women
  • Develop a Safety Plan – it’s critical!
  • Getting Ready to Leave
  • Leaving the Abuser
  • After Leaving
  • Referral Information:

The Assaulted Women’s Helpline, and other women’s services in your area


what can i say when someone you care about is acting abusively
What Can I Say?When someone you care about is acting abusively:
  • Approach him when he is calm
  • Tell him that you are concerned for the safety of his partner and children and that there is help for him
  • Recognize that confrontational, argumentative approaches may make the situation worse and put her at higher risk


a domestic violence workplace program
  • The Occupational Health and Safety Act changed in 2010 to make workplace violence a safety hazard.
  • Everyone in a workplace has a responsibility to prevent domestic violence.
  • All workplaces must have policies and procedures to keep workers safe.
a common misconception
Woman Abuse/Domestic Violence

is a private issue

In Canada, woman abuse in the workplace has been invisible

The tragic death of Lori Dupont has awakened us to the fact that it is a workplace issue

A Common Misconception
critical events and opportunities
Critical Events and Opportunities
  • Critical Events
    • Visible warning signs and risk factors
    • Should raise possibility of danger
  • Opportunities
    • A chance to intervene
    • Can be missed because of uncertainty or missing information
    • Organizations and individuals are unprepared


Critical Events & Missed Opportunities

Dupont Inquest





nff model program
NFF – “Model Program”
  • Dupont / Daniel Inquest - Recommendations
  • “to provide support to all workplaces to train all employees about the dynamics of domestic violence….as well as what to do if faced with a situation where violence enters the workplace
  • …model programs such as Neighbours, Friends and Families may be expanded in Ontario and be more directly inclusive of the role of the workplace”.


nff in the workplace
NFF in the Workplace


  • Why Workplaces Need to be Involved
  • The Dynamics of Domestic Abuse
  • How to Interrupt the Isolation
  • How to Intervene Safely and Respectfully
  • How to “open the door”…
  • Understanding the Traps of Why She Does Not Leave
know the rule of isolation
Know the Rule of Isolation

Isolation is a factor that is always present in situations of woman abuse

…It could even be considered a necessary condition

As the abuse escalates – the isolation becomes more profound

behaviours designed to interrupt isolation
Behaviours Designed to Interrupt Isolation

Learn to Recognize signs of abuse

Respond - Don’t sit alone with suspicions and questions

Seek help and take appropriate action – Refer to professionals

SEE it – NAME it – CHECK it

how do we prepare ourselves
How do we prepare ourselves?

Start with Heart

You can’t go wrong if you intervene from a place of genuine concern and care…

Neighbours, Friends and Families



How it Works

Engaging The Potential and Power of Everyday Relationships








Final Thoughts
  • You don’t have to be a hero or fix the situation.
  • Caring about the people around us, paying attention to them when there are signs of trouble and responding appropriately can make a big difference.
  • Little things count.