ROCHESTER (WROC) — Governor Kathy Hochul has signed an executive order directing all state agencies and authorities to adopt a workplace policy on gender-based violence.
The executive order — issued Thursday — followed a recently released Inspector General report that detailed a fatal incident of domestic violence involving two employees from two state agencies.
The executive order expands on a previous domestic violence order while strengthening these policies and expanding New York’s protections to include stalking and sexual assault.
The order requires agencies to create and issue a Gender-based Violence and Workplace policy that includes yearly training for supervisors, Domestic Violence Agency Liaisons and Human Resources staff.
“By setting these requirements, we are supporting the needs of individuals and families throughout the state in a survivor-centered, trauma informed and culturally responsive way,” said Governor Hochul. “Additionally, I will closely review the Inspector General’s recommendations alongside the NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence.”
The new policy has an explicit requirement for agencies to designate a Domestic Violence Agency Liaison to provide staff with resources and information.
The policy will also focus on assisting employees who experience gender-based violence by providing resources and explaining protections and benefits in the law to handle court appearances.
“Victims and survivors may be stalked or harassed at the office or come to work with signs of physical abuse from the night before,” said Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence Executive Director Kelli Owens.” We should use every opportunity to educate people to recognize what gender-based violence looks like.”