Domestic Abuse business awareness pilot stage 2
- Report reference number:
- 113 – 23
- Not protectively marked
- Title of report:
- Domestic Abuse business awareness pilot stage 2
- Area of county / stakeholders affected:
- Report by:
- Darren Horsman
- Date of report:
- Enquiries to:
- [email protected]
1. Executive Summary
1.1. This report proposes the allocation of £90,000 funding from the PFCC’s Victims’ Fund to The Essex Chambers of Commerce, working in conjunction with Practical HR, to undertake stage two of a pilot project delivering awareness raising of domestic abuse to Essex businesses.
1.2. This proposal follows the successful implementation of stage one of the project. The PFCC decided in decision report 140-22 to allocate £39,962.50 from the 2022-23 Victims’ Fund to Essex Chambers of Commerce for stage one.
2.1. The PFCC agrees to allocate £90,000 from the 2023-24 Victims’ Fund
brought forward underspend reserve, to the Essex Chambers of Commerce.
3. Background to the Proposal
3.1. Domestic Abuse is often an unspoken crime, and an employer may think it has little to do with the workplace, but we know that it costs the national economy billions of pounds per year. This can be felt directly by employers through lost work days, absence and lower productivity, but also indirectly
through mental health issues, distracted and frightened workers and low morale across a team. It has a far-reaching impact not just on individuals but on the whole workforce.
3.2. Following discussion with senior stakeholders, Essex Chambers of Commerce and Practical HR recognised an opportunity to improve understanding and promote action by businesses in support of victims of domestic abuse within the workforce.
3.3. The PFCC in decision report 140-22 agreed to fund stage one of a pilot project to test the proposal provided by the Essex Chamber of Commerce and Practical HR. During stage one 33 business organisations participated in the scheme (above the 20 target) and the awareness information was made
available to 2498 employees.
3.4. Feedback on the scheme from those who participated included 93 positive comments regarding the information and video (1 negative comment). 14 said that they would be contacting specialist agencies. 35 said that they would pass on the information (we provided a separate link to the employee’s awareness video and confirmed that the link could be shared with anyone outside the business who might benefit). Note: we are continuing to receive feedback. Figures are as of the end of March 23.
3.5. A number of positive case studies were also provided as evidence of the positive impact of stage one. The full evaluation of stage one is available as Appendix 1.
4. Proposal and Associated Benefits
4.1. Following the successful implementation of stage one a proposal was put forward for stage two. This was designed to expand the scheme and test several approaches of how the scheme could be widened to include more SMEs, larger businesses, and the most appropriate growth strategy to help the scheme transition to being self-funding.
4.2. Following discussions around the size, scope, and speed of stage two a revised proposal was put forward and supported at the PFCC’s Senior Management Team. This involves growing the businesses involved by 25, inclusion of relationship coaching, and additional areas of testing and research. The full proposal is available as appendix 2.
4.3. The proposal also set out a roadmap for two further stages after which it is hoped that the project will become self-funding.
5. Options Analysis
5.1 Following the successful implementation of stage one of this pilot the initial proposal from Essex Chambers of Commerce for stage two was for a more expensive programme of work.
5.2 This option represents a more affordable and more targeted approach with the wider programme broken down into further stages. The PFCC will have the decision to either progress or not with each of these stages following the results of each stage.
5.3 This option is more affordable option and maintains the PFCC’s ability to assess and decide on funding allocations at each stage ensuring we can maximise value for money and get the biggest benefit for the public.
5.4 The PFCC could decide not to take this approach, but this is not recommended and was not recommended when it was discussed at the PFCC Senior Management Team.
6. Consultation and Engagement
6.1. This proposal was discussed with key members of SETDAB during April and May 2023
7. Strategic Links
7.1. This work delivers against the PFCC’s Police and Crime Plan objectives to invest in crime prevention and protect vulnerable people & break the cycle of domestic abuse. It also specifically delivers against the PFCC’s commitment to work with businesses to tackle other forms of crime such as Domestic Abuse.
8. Police operational implications
8.1. No operational implications.
9. Financial implications
9.1. The PFCC will allocate a one-off grant of £90,000 from the 2023-24 Victims’ Fund brought forward underspend reserve, to the Essex Chambers of Commerce.
10. Legal Implications
10.1. This grant will be governed by the PFCC’s standard grant agreement.
11. Staffing implications
11.1. The monitoring of this grant will require PFCC resource. It is expected that this will be delivered by the Commissioning Officer (once in post).
12. Equality and Diversity implications
12.1 Domestic abuse affects many people, but is predominantly perpetrated to women by men. This project seeks to raise awareness of abuse, improve understanding, and give employers confidence to spot it and signpost or refer employees to appropriate support organisations. The project focuses on
working-age people in employment, but the general, awareness-raising nature of the work means it should improve awareness for all victims, regardless of their protected characteristics.
13. Risks and Mitigations
13.1. No identified risks associated with this funding
14. Governance Boards
14.1. This proposal is supported by the DPFCC Jane Gardner; chair of the countywide SETDA partnership. The original stage two proposal was discussed at the PFCC’s Management Team on 15 May 2023, the PFCC’s Senior Management Team on 24 May 2023, with the revised proposal being discussed on 20 June 2023, at which point the PFCC’s Senior Management Team recommended supporting the proposal.
15.Links to Future Plans
15.1 This proposal will support the PFCC to deliver against the Police & Crime Plan as well as the priorities in the SET Domestic Abuse strategy. It is stage two of what could end up being a four-stage project. Stage three and four are not committed to, but have been programmed in to the PFCC’s forward plan to ensure adequate discussion prior to a decision being made about resource allocation.
16.Background Papers and Appendices
The report will be signed off by the OPFCC Chief Executive and Treasurer prior to
review and sign off by the PFCC / DPFCC.
- D Horsman D Horsman
- Date signed:
- Deputy Monitoring Officer
- Janet Perry Janet Perry
- Date signed:
- Chief Financial Officer
Decision and Final Sign Off
I agree the recommendations to this report:
- Roger Hirst Roger Hirst
- Date signed:
Wet signed copy is held at the PCC office.