Domestic Violence in the Workplace
Domestic violence does not just "stay at home," nor are its victims limited to the batterer's intimate partner. Survivors of domestic violence are stalked, harassed and assaulted at work; they seek help and support from their co-workers and supervisors; the abuse may have an impact on their work and the functioning of their worksite. Batterers may take company time or use company equipment to stalk or harass, and co-workers may be concerned about their own safety.
Some people who are abused report that it is harder to do their jobs because of the abuse. Sometimes they are absent from work or cannot get their work done because of the abuse, their fear or exhaustion. They may also have to deal with legal issues, medical appointments, child care, concern for the safety of their children, and many other problems resulting from the abuse. Survivors may lose their jobs or have to leave as a result of the abuse or for safety reasons. When they are forced to leave, they also lose the resources they need to escape from the abuse, and the employer may lose a valued employee.
Many people believe that domestic violence is not a significant problem in or around the University of Michigan. However, according to the Michigan State Police Crime Report, in 2009 there were 103,331 domestic violence victims in Michigan. Washtenaw County accounted for 2,781of those victims and Wayne County had 30,169 victims of domestic violence.
In Washtenaw County in 2009, SafeHouse Center responded to 1,834 crisis calls related to domestic violence and sexual assault. They provided 8,111 nights of shelter to adults and children. Through all its services, SafeHouse typically serves 5,000 unique individuals per year, most of them Washtenaw County residents.
Domestic violence is an important issue for the University of Michigan and the surrounding community, and the university is committed to providing information, resources and confidential assistance for needs related to domestic violence. Read the university's commitment and response to domestic violence in the Domestic Violence in the University Community Procedural Guidelines. For additional information, review this flowchart that provides a quick overview of U-M policy guidelines and this list of related policies at the University of Michigan.