On the UNISON committee we support our members who find themselves in a wide range of difficulties. This sometimes means helping you get support from the University if you go through a time of family crisis. Statistics show that every week women are killed by their partners, but in addition to this many people (mostly, but not always, women) suffer physical, mental or sexual violence from their partners or ex-partners. Anyone can suffer from this and the situation can go on for years with the victim feeling ground down, making excuses for themself or their partner, and getting more scared. On average women are beaten up by their partners 38 times before asking for help. According to the Office of National Statistics 7.5% of women in Britain experienced domestic violence in 2017, and Stonewall found that in the same year, 16% of trans women experienced domestic abuse from a partner.
Survivors of domestic violence are at risk MOST when they leave the relationship which is why we need our employer to recognise that if your violent ex-partner knows where you work, the University has a duty to ensure your safety at work.
Because of this we have put together a proposal to ask for the university to make a Public and Formal Declaration of its intention to support our colleagues going through such an experience by adopting a Domestic Violence and Stalking Policy (which UNISON has already drafted in full) that will help anyone who is suffering in silence. The aim is to give colleagues the confidence to ask for help and to be assured that the university will provide a safe working environment if you are going through a tough time.
Please read and make any comment you feel would be useful; we are putting this forward on behalf of all our members and would appreciate your contributions.
The policy can be found here: https://uobunison.org.uk/domestic-violence-and-stalking-policy
Alison’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org