Eight organisations across Australia have achieved accreditation to become White Ribbon Workplaces after 12 months of rigorous assessment as part of a leading pilot program in the lead up to White Ribbon Day, 25 November.
In the 2009 Time for Action report, KPMG estimated that violence against women and their children cost the Australian economy $13.6 billion annually and this was expected to rise to $15.6 billion by 2021. In May 2013, KPMG announced the annual cost had already reached US$14.7 billion.
White Ribbon Australia CEO Libby Davies said that men’s violence against women is a shattering issue in our society that results in devastating costs to individuals, our communities and the nation.
“Whether being experienced in a person’s private life or professional life, violence against women impacts on women’s health, safety and capacity to do their work. It also impacts negatively on the organisation’s reputation and level of productivity,” Ms Davies said.
“The White Ribbon Australia Workplace Program builds on existing initiatives that address respectful relationships and gender equity by incorporating primary prevention and early intervention approaches. Accredited White Ribbon Workplaces have successfully implemented policies and procedures that will continue to drive positive, critical, social change.”
The first organisations to receive accreditation will be:
University of Canberra, ACT
The Department for Community and Social Inclusion, SA
The Office of the Fair Work Ombudsman, NSW
Together Queensland, Industrial Union of Employees, QLD
Monash University, VIC
Child & Family Services Ballarat, VIC
The Office of the Coordinator General for Remote Indigenous Services, ACT
The Uniting Church in Australia Property Trust (NSW) for UnitingCare NSW.ACT
Accredited White Ribbon Workplaces have successfully met 3 Standards and 17 Criteria that demonstrate zero tolerance to violence against women. They drive best practice to prevent men’s violence against women in the workplace and to effectively respond to incidents as they arise, be it inside or outside the workplace. White Ribbon Workplaces are recognised as social change agents.
The pilot program is funded until June 2014. A total of 24 organisations, including the above mentioned eight, are expected to be accredited by the end of 2013. More than 100 organisations have expressed interest in participating in next year’s program. Expressions of interest are being accepted at workplaces.whiteribbon.org.au/register-interest.