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Understanding and strengthening the role of EAPs in addressing intimate partner violence: lessons from EAP providers
  1. Keshia M Pollack,
  2. Monique Clinton-Sherrod,
  3. Christine Lindquist,
  4. Tasseli McKay,
  5. Beth Lasater,
  6. Jeane Ann Grisso
  1. Correspondence Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, 624 N. Broadway, Room 557, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA

Abstract

Given the widespread impact of intimate partner violence (IPV) on the workplace it is critical to understand the involvement of Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) in workplace-focused IPV activities. A cross-sectional design was employed to obtain information from a diverse set of EAPs, with detailed information about the types of services being offered to address IPV among employees served. EAPs were identified from various sources, including national EAP organisations, an advisory group to the larger grant, individual EAPs and other organisations and individuals who work or conduct research with data was collected from publicly available information and through semistructured telephone interviews with key informants from each EAP.

EAPs A total of 28 EAPs were identified and information about how EAPs assist workplaces, IPV victims and perpetrators was collected. We found that the IPV services available to employers and employees are extensive and primarily include assistance with policy development, delivery of trainings and seminars, delivery of educational/awareness-raising activities and provision of management/security staff consultation. Yet companies lack of awareness regarding the role of IPV as a workplace issue challenges the ability of EAPs to deliver extensive workplace-based IPV services. EAP representatives also reported challenges in identifying IPV victims, since standardised procedures to do so were limited. Findings from this research provide clear evidence that most EAPs are providing both general prevention activities in the workplace and individual employee services for IPV although these services range from limited to fairly comprehensive.

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