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Workplaces Respond to Domestic & Sexual Violence

When the Perpetrator and Victim are Both Employees

One of the most complicated risks occurs when the perpetrator of domestic or sexual violence or stalking and the victim are co-workers at the same company, or members of the same union.

The workplace policy on violence or harassment should address procedures with regard to employees who perpetrate acts of violence against anyone at the worksite, including the initiation of an investigation. Actions to increase victim and co-worker safety should focus on restricting the perpetrator's work behaviors.

The employee handbook, collective bargaining agreement, or relevant policy should list disciplinary consequences for committing acts of domestic violence, sexual violence or stalking in the workplace, on company time or with company property. If appropriate, employers can require a perpetrator to participate in relevant treatment as part of a disciplinary action.

The perpetrator should be afforded proper process, and if present, the union should fulfill any duties of fair representation towards the perpetrator and the victim. 


Partner Organizations Futures Without Violence (formerly Family Violence Prevention Fund), Legal Momentum, Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape and its National Sexual Violence Resource Center, National Sexual Assault Coalition Resource Sharing Project (RSP) of the Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault, American Bar Association Commission on Domestic & Sexual Violence, Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence, Victim Rights Law Center, and Stalking Resource Center: A Program of The National Center for Victims of Crime.

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Funding by US Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women

This project was supported by Grant No. 2009-TA-AX-K028 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed on this site or in any materials on this site, are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.