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Implement proposals from Our Watch's Workplace Equality and Respect Project


Who is leading the change

  • Department of Premier and Cabinet

On receipt of Our Watch's Workplace Equality and Respect Project final report, the Victorian Government should:

  • begin implementing best-practice workplace programs in all public sector workplaces in order to:
    • enable them to build respectful and gender equitable cultures
    • ensure that they have suitable policies for family violence victims
    • provide adequate responses to and not allow for collusion with family violence perpetrators
    • build skills and support staff in taking bystander action
  • support the maintenance of the project's proposed web-based portal or database of program models, tool kits, training resources and packages for application and use in all workplaces review and report on options for using existing regulatory frameworks and government procurement policies to support all Victorian employers in implementing best-practice family violence policies
  • The Workplace Equality and Respect (WER) program is testing the suite of resources and tools developed by Our Watch and funded by the Victorian Government which have been piloted in various settings. The change management program has commenced in core public service departments.

    The cycle of change management will enable workplaces to audit their organisation against core standards that provide a baseline for what a respectful, gender equitable workplace looks like. Workplaces will then develop a plan to address issues highlighted by the audit and be supported to implement their plans and strategies.

    Our WatchExternal Link is supporting the development of a whole of government WER Plan and provide tailored support to Victorian Public Service (VPS) departments to develop and implement individual plans.

    From 2021, the Gender Equality Act 2020External Link (the Act) will be the primary means to address gender inequality in the Victorian public sector and local government workplace settings. Following the rollout of WER in the VPS, the intention of Recommendation 192 will be sustained through implementation of the Act.

  • Between November 2015 and September 2017, the Workplace Equality and Respect Project (the Project) was implemented by Our Watch with funding from the Victorian Government. The Project aimed to contribute to a community with gender equitable structures, norms and practices that condemn violence in all its forms utilising workplace settings to prevent violence against women and their children. As part of the Project, 4 Victorian workplaces were engaged to pilot draft workplace tools and resources to guide workplace-based prevention initiatives. A set of standards and tools were subsequently developed and refined over 4 key phases.

    Victorian Public Service (VPS) departments are on track to finalise implementation of WER by December 2020 with the support of Our Watch. Departments have completed change readiness assessments and are participating in a WER steering committee that supports the roll-out of WER. WER trainers have been engaged to support VPS departments to undertake workplace self-assessments against the WER Standards, revise or develop a family violence prevention and response plan, participate in training to understand the role of the workplace in the prevention of family violence, and develop policies and practices that create a positive workplace culture.

  • Implemented

Reviewed 26 August 2020

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