Labor’s Family Violence Leave announcement will help local women and men

A Shorten Labor Government will make domestic and family violence leave a universal workplace right; to further support those suffering family and domestic violence in the Central Victorian community.

"I know from talking to local victims and their support agencies that time off from work and an understanding from their employer and workplace is critical. 

"There are heart breaking stories about victims attempting to escape violent situations only to fear asking for leave or time off from work. 

"This is a very practical policy announcement and I hope Central Victorian small businesses embrace it with respect and understanding. 

A Shorten Labor Government will provide for five days paid domestic and family violence leave in the National Employment Standards (NES). 

The National Employment Standards provide statutory minima for all employees covered by the national workplace relations system. 

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics one in six Australian women has experienced physical or sexual violence from a current or former partner. 

The trauma of domestic and family violence is often compounded by workplace and financial uncertainty. 

Australian of the Year Rosie Batty has previously noted “the ability to maintain your employment, keep your job, it helps secure somewhere to live, it helps you to have that ongoing working contact with your colleagues, it’s a really important part of your journey.” 

Domestic and family violence leave will benefit both those who have experienced violence as well as business through improved productivity, increased employee retention and reduced absenteeism. 

Consider the time required in courts, meeting with lawyers, financial advisers, the school principal, counselling sessions for people who have experienced violence which is required in that pursuit of safety and justice.  

This policy announcement will also encourage Central Victorian workplaces to have these difficult and tough conversations. 

It will help challenge and change the workplace conversation and ensure they do their parts to help and support victims of family and domestic violence. 

Labor understands that the complexity of family and domestic violence requires a strategic approach by all levels of government, business, and the community. 

Domestic and Family Violence leave is listed in Australia’s strategic framework, the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010–2022 as a national priority to reducing the impact of family and domestic violence on women. 

Labor calls on the Turnbull Liberal Government to support Labor’s commitment to domestic and family violence leave, which will be a pivotal part of people being able to remain in work as they strive for safety and justice. 

For a copy of Labor’s policy please visit: 


If you cover this story, or any story regarding violence against women and children, please include the following tagline:

*** If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or In an emergency, call 000”  ***