Travers Smith has become the latest City firm to create a domestic abuse policy to support staff at risk during lockdown, and has urged other businesses to do the same.
The new policy includes paid leave arrangements for those living with domestic abuse, the launch of an anonymous communication platform, a series of online training sessions, and a toolkit signposting external services and charities.
Domestic abuse charity SafeLives has advised Travers Smith on the policy, which is designed to ‘demonstrate the firm's commitment to do all it can to offer the right support to those experiencing domestic abuse, particularly during this current period of remote working’. The firm also hopes it will raise the awareness of the issue, so that ‘those who are in a position to support others can draw on the policy and are trained to do so’.
Director for pro bono Sam Cottman said: ‘Domestic abuse is a huge problem in our society. While Travers Smith is already very active in representing survivors of abuse outside of our organisation, we also think it right that we look after our own people in the event that they experience this kind of abuse.
‘I am delighted that the firm has put this policy, and the associated support network, in place and would encourage other firms to do the same. There is no part of society which is left untouched by this issue and so employers have an important opportunity to look after their employees here.’
Last year, magic circle firm Linklaters introduced a package of support measures for employees living with domestic abuse, including free emergency accommodation, up to 10 days paid leave and a one-off payment of up to £5,000.