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Jobs & Workers’ Rights

Access to money is critically important for survivors of abuse to find safety and independence from an abusive partner. This is a collection of resources to help you find a job as well as understand your rights at work. Resources on how employers can be supportive of survivors are also included.

Jobs

  • WorkSource – The Washington Job Bank. This site also offers tips on writing your resume and cover letter, job searching, and more.
  • Employment Security – Job offerings, apprenticeships, free workshops, job training, and more.
  • Washington Asset Building Coalition – Works to promote policies and programs that help moderate and low-income families in Washington State build, maintain, and preserve financial assets. They have links to local, state, and national financial resources on things like banking, taxes, financial education, and micro-enterprise.

Employment and your rights

  • Survivors’ Rights at Work – It is illegal for an employer to discriminate against people based on their experience of abuse. Find out more about this and other rights you have as an employee if you are experiencing abuse in your relationship.
  • Domestic Violence Leave for Victims and Family Members – A document from the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries outlining the new law allowing leave for domestic violence. Included is information about where to find updates about this law and who to contact at L&I with questions.
  • Legal Protections: Employment and Domestic Violence – Information from Legal Voice describing Washington State’s employment protection law in question and answer form.
  • Safety at Work for Immigrants – “Know Your Rights” booklet by the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project that addresses your rights when you are stopped, questioned, arrested, or searched by a law enforcement officer or if your workplace is raided. Information offered in English and Español.
  • Plan for Your Safety at Work – Safety plans can be helpful for survivors who are concerned about their abuser interfering with their ability to work and stay safe.
  • Self Sufficiency Calculator – Using the Self Sufficiency Calculator you can look at your overall budget, see the Self Sufficiency Standard cost-of-living estimate for your family type, and learn about resources that can assist you in planning and progressing toward your financial goals.

Unemployment insurance

You might be eligible for unemployment benefits if you left work due to domestic violence. Learn about your rights, safety, and how and where you can go for help if you feel you qualify for unemployment benefits due to domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking.

Resources for employers

There are many opportunities to help employers support employees experiencing domestic violence.

  • Workplaces Respond to Domestic & Sexual Violence – A national resource center that provides examples of what employers across the country are doing to address domestic violence and offers free resources to help employers respond appropriately to domestic and sexual violence.
  • Small Business Initiative on Domestic Violence – A brochure with information and statistics about domestic violence and the workplace. Learn more about how to talk to employers in your community about this issue.

Domestic violence programs as employers

In addition to supporting survivors at their workplace, we’re thinking about how best to provide good jobs for advocates and staff at domestic violence programs.

We surveyed the staff and directors of WSCADV member programs—in 2011 and again in 2015—about wages, benefits, and other workplace practices. What did we learn?