Sexual Violence Survivors Face Financial Costs – Workplaces Can Help

Screenshot of Ebony Tucker during a panel

The Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Biden Institute hosted a panel last week focused on the negative impact of sexual and domestic violence both in and out of the workplace. RALIANCE Executive Director Ebony Tucker served as a panelist to share her perspective on the relationship between sexual violence and economic justice.

Here are two of the main takeaways from Ebony’s panel:

Sexual violence leads to significant income disparities. According to a report from the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence, a survivor’s earning potential can be severely stunted. For example, survivors who were sexually assaulted during adolescence are less likely to graduate high school and may ultimately experience an estimated lifetime income loss of more than $200,000. And each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, survivors of intimate partner rape lose an estimated 1.1 million days of paid and household activity and an average of $69 in daily earnings.

Workplace policies can promote economic justice. Paid sick and safe days – which include allowances for counseling or criminal justice coordination – can help survivors meet their needs while remaining gainfully employed. Additionally, ensuring pay transparency can reduce inequitable pay gaps based on an individual’s gender or their status as a survivor. (For more information on reducing unequal pay, check out our blog focused on building equitable workplaces.)

The economic disparities facing survivors compound the already significant challenges of recovering from the trauma of an assault. Workplace policies that are welcoming and supportive of survivors cannot fully relieve the financial costs of sexual violence, but they are an important step in the right direction.

RALIANCE provides consulting, assessment, and employee development services to help build more equitable workplace cultures and create environments free from sexual harassment, misconduct and abuse. We stand ready to support your organization’s goals – contact us today at [email protected] to get started.

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