Friday, April 25, 2008

When Domestic Violence Goes to Work

Supporting women and their children in their efforts to live violence free.
Partnership Against Domestic Violence Mission

The Partnership Against Domestic Violence (PADV) is the largest nonprofit domestic violence organization in Georgia and has provided empowering support to battered women and their children in metro Atlanta for more than 30 years.

On Thursday, April 24, 2008, PADV hosted its sixth annual When Domestic Violence Goes To Work conference at The Loudermilk Conference Center in Atlanta, Georgia. The event, masterfully coordinated by Susan Berryman-Rodriguez, Director of Community Relations, with the efforts of a dedicated Board and staff, offered practical advice on

  • How and why to conduct a vulnerability assessment
  • How to assess the lethality of a domestic violence situation in the workplace
  • Why it's important to be proactive and establish appropriate policies and protocols that specifically address domestic violence in the workplace

As the invited keynote speaker, I was privileged to present to over 125 attendees representing corporations and colleges from throughout Georgia.


  • Why are we Here?
    • Domestic Abuse and Violence
    • One Life
  • Domestic Violence and the Workplace
    • Overview and Impact
    • Warning Signs
    • Awareness and Action
  • Lessons Learned: Virginia Tech Tragedy
  • Violence Prevention In The Workplace
  • Remembering the Victims of Domestic Violence
  • Conclusion

Although the statistics on the negative impact of domestic violence in the American workplace are staggering, I stressed the ethical standard we must have when it comes to violence prevention:

"When it comes to even one life, we must do what is right—not what is convenient, politically expedient, or the most cost effective.

"In simplest terms, we must learn to care for one another in our time of need."

It is caring, vigilant and proactive people, not sterile policies and procedures, that is the key to violence prevention in the workplace. By fostering leadership principles to create a culture of respect and unity of effort, employees are more likely to respond appropriately when they see warning signs.

Four extraordinary breakout sessions followed the keynote:

  • Domestic Violence 101
  • When to Call 911
  • Top Five Things to Include in the Domestic Violence Policy
  • Above and Beyond a Policy

The conference also included theatrical presentations entitled Do The Right Thing which provided insights on how to sensitively handle the complexities of domestic violence in the workplace; different scenarios conveyed clear-cut methods on how to best approach the issues.

Domestic violence is a scourge that must be eradicated from our society. Until that day comes, organizations like PADV provide a vital service to the women and children affected and they deserve our support.


Partnership Against Domestic Violence Click here to visit site
Domestic Violence and Abuse: Warning Signs and Symptoms of Abusive Relationships Click here to visit site
The Collateral Damage of Domestic Violence Click here to visit site

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