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Western University receives more than $2M to develop workplace domestic violence training

Alan Powell, Media Project Director for Facilitator Films is honoured to be developing training videos for federally regulated workers to recognize and respond to domestic violence in the workplace. Funding for this CDN $2.088M initiative is provided by the Government of Canada’s Workplace Harassment and Violence Prevention Fund. Powell will also be producing and directing the videos for this pilot program that has potential to roll out internationally. Raad the article below or access source articles online at:


The Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women and Children (CREVAWC) at Western University’s Faculty of Education has received $2.088 million to develop training for federally regulated workers to recognize and respond to domestic violence in the workplace.

The program was developed by Western University's Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children.

CREVAWC has partnered with the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and Federally Regulated Employers – Transportation and Communications (FETCO) to implement the training. Barb MacQuarrie, community director for CREVAWC, says this training will help employees understand that what happens at home doesn’t necessarily have to stay at home. “There’s been an invisible barrier between work and home for a long time,” said MacQuarrie.“The training is part of the bigger picture of creating social change where we, as a society, recognize domestic violence comes to work and impacts the workplace. We have to understand many people have experienced this directly or indirectly, we need to talk about it. We have to take it out of the dark corners where the problem only gets worse.” The training is being developed in response to Bill C-65, which recognizes violence as a workplace hazard and requires training for both employers and employees.

The evidence-based research, which began in March, includes discussions with employers, labour representatives and survivors of domestic violence. The new research will build on the centre’s past work, including a national research study released in 2014 documenting the impact of domestic violence on workers and workplaces. That study found that Canadian employers lose $77.9 million annually due to the direct or indirect impacts of domestic violence.

Unions and employers will have three different training options: 'basic suite', 'supervisor suite' and 'facilitator suite'.

The basic suite involves an interactive one-hour format that puts employers and employees in different situations.Supervisor suite requires three hours of online training to educate supervisors on their obligations in preventing and responding to domestic violence in the workplace. The facilitator suite is the most extensive program, with seven hours of online training that allow participants to interact with a facilitator in real time.

“I’m hoping to see a shift in conversations about domestic violence. This training will help reduce the stigma of those experiencing domestic violence,” said MacQuarrie. CREVAWC hopes to expand the training program to provincial jurisdictions as well as internationally once the 30-month pilot has been completed.

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