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Rio Tinto supporting DV victims

Kelly Marie Smith, ECU Journalist

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Mining giant Rio Tinto has taken a stance on domestic violence, announcing special leave entitlements for people experiencing violence at home.

This comes after the McGowan Government stated that public sector workers, including casual employees, experiencing family problems and domestic violence would be granted ten days leave, including specialised support over that time.

Western Australia has the second highest rate of reported sexual and physical violence against women in Australia, second only to the Northern Territory. While across the nation, one in four women have experienced physical or emotional violence by an intimate partner.

Simone McGurk, minister for Prevention of Family and Domestic Violence, believes more companies need to support employees during this time,

“Every day, in this State, the lives of people we know and love are being devastated by family and domestic violence. I congratulate Rio Tinto on the leadership they are showing on this issue and I call on the rest of the private sector to do the same.”

“At a critical time when victims need to feel safe and be supported, this leave will give Rio Tinto employees the flexibility and time to attend court and doctors’ appointments, as well as see their lawyers,” she said.

Western Australia has been making moves to improve legislation that gives victims of family and domestic violence better protection, allowing the state to participate in the National Domestic Violence Order Scheme.

This follows previous government inaction that left WA lagging behind other jurisdictions.

According to Minister McGurk, it’s been a long time coming,

“It’s time for us to be able to provide consistent, instantaneous legal protection across State and Territory boundaries to enhance victim safety and perpetrator accountability.”

“They can get on with establishing their new home, secure in the knowledge that their domestic violence order will be upheld by police and courts in any State or Territory,” she said.

The National Scheme is due to start on 25 November, 2017.

If you, or someone you know, is experiencing domestic violence, contact the Domestic Violence Helpline on 1800 007 339.

If it is an emergency, or if someone is in immediate danger, call the Police on 000.

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Rio Tinto supporting DV victims