Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence

Information for Professionals


Desk Reference: Recognizing and Responding to Domestic Violence and the Workplace

This Desk Reference is designed to help you assess for domestic violence and provide appropriate assistance and referral for victims. The information applies to all victims, regardless of their gender or the gender of their partner, including gay, lesbian and transgender victims and men who are abused by their female partners.

Possible Indicators:
Victims of domestic violence may seek assistance for a wide variety of problems other than the violence itself. Possible indicators of domestic violence include:

Assessment Guidelines:
The best way to identify whether an employee is a victim of domestic violence is to ASK. Recommended guidelines for assessing for domestic violence include:

If the employee states that they are or may be experiencing domestic violence:

If the employee states they are not a victim, but there are clear indicators of domestic violence:

Provide support for employee’s decisions. Don’t judge the success of your intervention by the employee’s action and remember that there are risks attached to every decision a victim makes. Be patient and respectful of a victim’s decisions, even if you don’t agree with them.