Domestic violence continues to be a growing problem in Saskatchewan, and the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour is calling on the provincial government to change that for the better.
The SFL wants the province to introduce legislation that allows victims to take paid time off to address problems related to domestic violence, a policy many other countries and Canadian provinces have.
Secretary Treasurer Lori Johb said there are a number of issues a domestic violence victim may face, including the disclosure of their personal problems at work.
“Often, there’s stigma attached because there’s a ‘blame-the-victim’ mentality and I’m afraid that’s something that we’re working on to bring awareness, because no victim should ever feel like it’s their fault,” Johb says. “They don’t ask to be abused in any way, so we feel strongly that the victims voice is very important.”
Johb said results from similar programs in Australia and other Canadian provinces have shown that it`s typically not a long period of time taken off.
“It’s usually an hour here or an hour there, maybe a morning, so it’s not like they’re taking a whole week off, or five days in a row or more than that,” Johb said. “If the time comes where they need an extensive leave, if they maybe perhaps are moving, or there’s a really intense violence situation, then those are different conversations to have.”
Johb adds this time is typically taken for meetings with a lawyer, counselling, or seeking medical attention for themselves or children.