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Friday, 23 November 2018 13:23

NextDC takes initiative in support of White Ribbon Day Featured

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Listed Australian data centre provider NextDC has introduced a new internal company policy that offers paid leave to victims of domestic violence, as part of its support for the White Ribbon Australia program to stop men’s violence against women.

Announced on Friday in support of White Ribbon Day — and in alignment with the company’s corporate social responsibility programs — NextDC’s new internal policy is available for employees suffering domestic violence to make arrangement for safety or alternative accommodation, access support services, attend to personal matters or to attend court hearings.

“At NextDC, we have introduced Family and Domestic Violence Leave to support any of our employees who may be experiencing domestic violence,” said Fiona Notley, chief people and culture officer.

“By offering paid leave to our permanent employees, we hope to mitigate the stress and financial worry that people in these terrible situations may be facing.

“Knowing the horrendous statistics of violence towards women in our country — that one in three women experience some form of domestic abuse in Australia, and that on average one woman per week in Australia is killed by their partner or former partner — empowered us to better support the women in our work environment and our local communities.

“I encourage other companies in the private sector to follow suit and provide support for those who need it most in our communities.”

NextDC (ASX:NXT) said in Friday’s announcement that the policy for employees would be available for those in need to take steps to minimise harm and to deal with the impacts of the violence.

“Such time may be required in order to make safety or alternate accommodation arrangements, or for medical, police or legal assistance, court hearings or counselling. The abuse may be actual or threatened, and may be physical, sexual, emotional or psychological.

“For permanent employees and fixed-term contractors, employees are eligible to take up to 10 days per annum of special paid leave, to avoid needing to use sick leave, holiday leave or leave without pay. Additional amounts of special leave are available an as-required basis appropriate to the specific circumstances. Furthermore, confidential counselling services are provided free of charge through our NextDC Employee Assistance Program,” NextDC said.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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