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New Zealand will be the first country in the world to offer victims of domestic violence paid leave.

The new bill, which takes effect in 2019, allows those who are leaving abusive relationships 10 days off work (in addition to any paid sick time) in order to find new lodging. The new legislation also lets employees ask employers for flexible work schedules as they adjust to their new lives.

This piece of legislation was seven years in the making, and it's a huge win. In New Zealand, the rates of domestic and family violence are reportedly some of the highest in the world — according to a New Zealand Herald article from 2017, approximately "525,000 people are harmed by family violence on an annual basis."


This bill is an important way forward in creating tangible ways to support people living in violent situations.

Jan Logie, a member of New Zealand's House of Representatives and the author of the bill, emphasized that domestic violence isn't just limited to the home.

"It reaches into workplaces all over our country: stalking, constant emails, attacks, or threats in and outside of the workplace making her late or making her miss work altogether, punishing her for being late," she said during the final debate on the bill.

By mitigating the fear of economic insecurity that prevents many people from leaving violent situations, the bill sends a clear message that domestic violence is not the fault of the victim and that leaving an abusive relationship shouldn't come with negative financial repercussions.

New Zealand's win is an example of policy done right. Other countries should consider following suit.

Domestic violence is, unfortunately, a global problem. According to the World Health Organization, 30% of women worldwide have experienced physical abuse at the hands of an intimate partner. And, in America, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been victims of domestic violence in their lifetime, according to The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. And as the world fights to end this phenomenon, it's imperative that victims be supported on a wide systemic level.

New Zealand is leading by example. The rest of the world should take immediate notice.

All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

True

We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


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