Paid leave for domestic violence victims welcomed

Photo courtesy of Cuan Saor

A Tipperary Women’s Refuge says paid leave for victims of domestic violence is a step in the right direction.

Under the Work Life Balance and Miscellaneous Provisions Bill five days paid leave from work is now afforded to any victim no questions asked.

Rhea Hanton the Court Support worker with Clonmel’s refuge and support service for women and children, Cuan Saor, says this will improve things but it will depend on how it is managed.

She says that Minister Roderic O’Gorman is set to publish guidelines on its implementation and these will determine the success of the policy.

Rhea told Tipp FM that there are some areas in particular that need focus such as protecting those dealing with financial abuse.

“People who are experiencing financial abuse it often means that the finances are monitored so any change in that income at all kind of raises the flag to say that there is something going on here, and it is something then that somebody in that situation can’t explain why their wage has been decreased so it causes a major safety concern there.”

She also told Tipp FM that while they are glad to see progress they foresee issues with the five days limit.

“We were hoping that it would be 10 days and not 5 days for many reasons, if an incident takes place tonight tomorrow they might want to go to court to access court orders. They have requested that you give notice, now more often than not that is no problem but there are incidences where you can’t give that notice and that is going to cause a difficult. Court days yes you can go through quite smoothly you might get away with three courts dates but more often than not it’s a bit more than that.”