A new bill in the Florida Legislature promises to extended unemployment benefits to victims of domestic violence who leave their work due to safety concerns. This bill illustrates how domestic violence goes far beyond the home. It alters a victim’s economic mobility in a very real and serious way. Victims who are forced to leave their homes to escape their abuser often leave with nothing more than the clothes on their back. In addition, many of these individuals are fleeing their main source of income, the abuser.
As the attached article explains, domestic violence can also touch those outside of the family. Domestic violence can spill into the work force, with jilted spouses taking their aggression out, sometimes violently, on anyone in close proximity with the victim. It seems a natural and welcomed step for our Legislature to try and give verified victims of domestic violence the minimum assistance of unemployment benefits. Leaving a job because of safety concerns arising from domestic violence is just as unforeseen as being fired. Also, it can save the life of not only the victim, who is leaving a location known to the abuser, but also the lives of countless co-workers. Let’s see how far this bill gets with Florida’s Legislature.
Link to Miami Herald article: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/01/09/2581575/victims-lobby-for-workplace-domestic.html