Family Violence is not ok

Part of the Warehouse Group’s vision is to help Aotearoa New Zealand flourish. Our strategy is to partner with communities in New Zealand that we all live in to help make New Zealand a great place to live.

We recognise that with a team of 12,000 strong employed with The Warehouse Group right across New Zealand, that our team really are a reflection of the New Zealand community as a whole. We believe that all businesses play an important role in society and collectively we can really make change together. Our aim is that being able to support the really difficult social issues our team members face, we will help New Zealand prosper in the long term.

In New Zealand every 5.5 minutes the police are called to a DV related incident, 1 in 3 women will experience DV at some point in their lifetime and 10 men, 13 women and 9 children are killed each year as a result of family violence. If we translate these statistics into the impact on our team of over 12,000, there are 2400 women and 300 men currently working for us who could experience family violence at some point in their lives.

Consistent with our vision and strategy, we developed the Family Violence is not ok Initiative. This initiative is a multi-layer sustainable approach that aims to embed support for team members who may be experiencing family violence into the workplace by offering time, support, training and the tools to those who come across this unfortunate issue many New Zealanders face.

Our Family Violence is not ok initiative aims to support our team by helping to keep them in work, reduce isolation so that they can continue to meet their emotional and economic needs and those of their family. In this way we are supporting our team to bring their whole selves to work without fear.

The Warehouse Group supports those team members impacted by domestic violence so they can take necessary time away from work to attend court, meet with Women’s Refuge, or relocate, without financial consequences.

In conjunction with Women’s Refuge and White Ribbon NZ and as a part of this initiative, we have further developed a “gold standard” training programme for the leaders throughout our organisation to be aware of the signs of domestic violence, how to approach a conversation and the support that is available both internally through our policy and externally from other professional organisations who can support them throughout an incredibly difficult time.

This initiative has had a tremendous impact directly on our team in terms of being open with our team about the fact we genuinely care about their personal lives and want to acknowledge they come from diverse backgrounds and that our aim is to support them to be the best they can be.

On November 25, each year which is white ribbon day, we purchase for our team right across all of our brands, a white ribbon to wear and promote the anti-violence message. Furthermore, last year we give 1 million of our customers a free white ribbon at the checkout during the annual campaign to raise awareness throughout New Zealand.

We are the first business in New Zealand to be a White Ribbon Accredited employer which recognises our significant commitment to prevention and support of family violence in New Zealand.

Our Family Violence is not ok initiative won the Corporate Social Responsibility award and was a finalist in the The Christian Dahmen Memorial Award for HR Innovation Award at the 2017 Human Resources Institute of New Zealand Awards.

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