Devin P. Kelley had a long and troubled history of violence and abuse before he walked up to the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Tex. and began an assault that killed at least 26 people.
According to the New York Times, Kelley “repeatedly struck, kicked and choked his first wife beginning just months into their marriage, and hit his stepson’s head with what the Air Force described as ‘a force likely to produce death or grievous bodily harm.’” That was 2012. He was imprisoned for his crime. In later years, he abused his second wife and hurt their dog, for which he was charged with cruelty to animals. He sent threatening texts. He bought weapons. People knew him to be … off.
More than 12 million people will be hurt, harassed, stalked or raped by a partner this year. One in every four women and one in 10 men will experience domestic violence in their lifetime, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Up to 50 percent of transgender people will experience intimate partner violence in their lifetime. And this recent report, also from the CDC, found that nearly half of all women who are murdered in the U.S. are killed by domestic partners.
That’s a public health problem.
But a history of domestic abuse and partner violence is so often present in mass shooters that it has become a pattern too disturbing to ignore.
It’s now a national security issue, as well.
“Time and time again, spasms of violence in public places have been followed by investigations into the attackers and suspects. Many of those probes have unearthed reports of violence or threatening behavior against women in their lives,” says Mark Berman in the Washington Post. He ticks through a number of recent perpetrators, all of them male, including James Alex Fields Jr., who drove his car through a group of activists in Charlottesville; James T. Hodgkinson, who opened fire on Republican members of Congress at a softball practice; and Robert Lewis Dear who opened fire at a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic.
Let’s widen the lens to make it a workplace issue, too.
The total costs to the US economy of intimate violence – including medical care, mental health services, and time away from work exceed $8 billion a year. The figure for lost productivity alone is some $727.8 million. That’s 8 million paid work days lost each year.
And some 65 percent of companies don’t have a formal workplace domestic violence policy, according to research conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management.
Victims have a wide variety of practical needs. They may need time away from work for legal, financial or psychological counseling – which they may not be able to afford. They may need time for court dates, and for meetings with teachers or other caregivers. They may be injured or traumatized and need time to recover. They may be having trouble focusing at work, particularly on stretch assignments. And because domestic violence can be deeply humiliating, it may be difficult for them to tell people around them what they need. They may not even know themselves.
And the perpetrators often harass them at work. One study from the Maine Department of Labor found that “78 percent of surveyed perpetrators used workplace resources at least once to express remorse or anger toward, check up on, pressure, or threaten their victim; 74 percent had easy access to their intimate partner’s workplace; and 21 percent reported that they had contacted their victim at the workplace in violation of a no-contact order.”
These are not easy issues to address. In Australia, one issue being debated is paid domestic violence leave, which would allow victims to take time off to get themselves to safety. While it may not make it into law this year – or at all – the policy is already being adopted by some employers. According to Australian government statistics, on average, one woman is killed every week as a result of intimate partner violence.
It’s also worth mentioning that perpetrators typically draw a check from somewhere. What does a zero-tolerance policy look like in your organization? What does it say about our culture when our sports heroes are attacked for protesting violence but rewarded despite committing it?
If intimate partner violence is not currently part of your inclusion plans, it needs to be.
I grew up in a violent home, so I know how horrifying it is when the person who is supposed to love and protect you is the one hurting you. But this is now everyone’s issue, made more urgent because it’s so difficult to discuss.
If the current momentum around the #MeToo revelations is really a sign of a different time, then let it also be the time to address the personal violence that derails the lives of victims, families, communities, companies – and left unchecked, perpetrators as well.
Here are some resources to get you started.
Instructions: Write a 350-500 word analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the following technical document. In your analysis, discuss the document's use of language, awareness of audience, organization, professional format, and overall usability. SUBJECT: Violence Memo TO: Todd Shimoyama FROM: Avianca Harper DATE: April 2, 2007 Todd - I went to OfficePro conference on May 2. The topic was how to prevent workplace violence, and I found it very fascinating. Although we have been fortunate to avoid serious incidents at our company, it's better to be safe than sorry. Since I was the representative from our company, I thought you would like me to report about same suggestions for preventing workplace violence. Robert Mather was the presenter, and he made suggestions in three categories, which I will summarize here. Mr. Mother cautioned organizations to prescreen job applicants. As a matter of fact, wise companies do not offer employment until after a candidate's background has been checked. Just the mention of a background check is enough to make some candidates withdraw. These candidates, of course, are the ones with something to hide. A second suggestion was that companies should prepare a good employee handbook that outlines what employees should do when they suspect potential workplace violence. This handbook should include a way for informers to be anonymous. A third recommendation had to do with recognizing red-flag behavior. This involves having companies train managers to recognize signs of potential workplace violence. What are some of the red flags? One sign is an increasing number of arguments with coworkers. Another sign is extreme changes in behavior or statements indicating depression over family or financial problems. Another sign is bullying or harassing behavior. Bringing a firearm to work or displaying an extreme fascination with firearms is another sign. By the way, the next OfficePro conference is in September, and the topic is the new OSHA standards. I think that the best recommendation is prescreening job candidates. This is because it is most feasible. If you want me to do more research on prescreening techniques, do not hesitate to let me know. Let me know by May 7 if you want me to make a report at our management meeting, which is scheduled for June. Avianca source..
Violence MemoName:Instructor:Date:Violence MemoThe memo report gives the purpose and problem to be tackled in first paragraph whereby the author states that the aim of attending the OfficePro conference was to discuss about workplace violence. The writer goes on and states that the reasons to why she thinks it is right for her to report about the Conference was because she was a representative of the company. However, the writer fails to mention her current position and capacity in the company. Consequently, there is need to highlight on the strengths and weaknesses of the memo. The memo’s content appears to focus on the writer as...
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