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feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

July-17-07

Florida Adopts Domestic Violence Leave Act

A new law recently went into effect in Florida to protect victims of domestic violence from losing their jobs due to necessary time off to seek medical attention or counseling, or to take legal action. Employers with 50 or more employees are now required to provide up to three days off to victims. Compensation for the time off is left to the discretion of the employer. All information about the domestic violence situation is to be kept confidential.

Employees must work for the employer for at least three months in order to receive domestic violence leave. They are also required to give their employer prior notice, unless this requirement is waived by the company or there is an imminent danger to the health or safety of the victim.

"This law clearly is a step forward for victims of domestic violence," Jay Christiansen, the director of programs for the Shelter for Abused Women and Children in Naples Florida, said. "It creates a framework for how businesses should respond to domestic violence, as well as providing Florida's nearly 120,000 annual victims of intimate partner abuse a few days of needed time to address the safety, legal and medical issues they face as they try to rebuild their lives free from abuse."

The law was passed by Florida legislature and signed by Governor Charlie Crist on June.

Media Resources: ABC News 7/2/07; Jackson Lewis 6/21/07


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