Why get the DVFREE Tick?

The DVFREE Tick is a mark of confidence that an employer has taken meaningful steps to achieve goals of a DVFREE workplace: 
  • Employees impacted by domestic violence feel safe and supported at work
  • Domestic violence is not tolerated or excused; the workplace promotes and supports respectful behaviour within domestic/family relationships
  • All employees know what to do if a work colleague is experiencing or perpetrating domestic violence
  • A best practice workplace response to domestic violence exceeds legal obligations under the Domestic Violence – Victims Protection Act 2018 and other laws

The DVFREE Tick is also a structured partnership with Shine’s DVFREE Team, which can help ensure you provide a sustainable, best practice workplace response to domestic violence, while also helping the DVFREE team to learn from your experience and improve the support and services we offer.

You can request a list of referees from DVFREE Tick accredited organisations who can share their experience of going through this process with you.

See our current DVFREE Tick partners. 

DVFREE Tick Criteria

The basis of the criteria for the DVFREE Tick are the essential recommendations within the Guidelines for a DVFREE Workplace Programme.

In addition to the Guidelines’ essential recommendations, DVFREE Tick training requirements are as follows:

  • Your First Responders must participate in DVFREE initial First Responder training and annual refresher training
  • All of your managers with direct reports must participate in DVFREE Manager training. While we understand this is a significant commitment of time and resource, manager training is critical to ensuring a safe and supportive response for employees who experience domestic violence.
    • The DVFREE Tick requires 70% of an organisation’s managers to participate in DVFREE manager training, and bi-annual refresher training. Organisations with more than 500 employees may have up to two additional years to meet this threshold.
    • Managers can be trained with the DVFREE manager online learning programme, OR by attending live DVFREE manager training which may be delivered either by a Shine trainer OR by a Tick partner organisation’s trainer who has been DVFREE accredited to deliver this training (Please contact usto enquire about fees and process for this option). The DVFREE Tick fee and Tick renewal fee includes the license for the manager online learning programme as well as one live manager training.
Legal Obligations vs DVFREE Tick Criteria

The DVFREE Tick criteria requires going above and beyond employers’ legal obligations under the Domestic Violence – Victims Protection Act 2018 and other relevant laws. See a high level comparison of legal vs DVFREE Tick requirements.

The Process

The process of working towards the DVFREE Tick officially starts once you sign a DVFREE Tick Agreement and pay your initial DVFREE Tick fee. After that, we will support you at your pace to meet the DVFREE Tick criteria over a period of up to one year. Some partners have achieved the DVFREE Tick within several months, while the average time for this is closer to six months.

Organisations may do these steps in a slightly different order, but broadly, the required steps  are as follows:

  1. Create or revise your domestic/family violence policy and procedures, and domestic/family violence information for staff to meet DVFREE Tick requirements. You may also need to update other policies, procedures and staff information to align (e.g. your leave policy updated to include domestic violence leave).
  2. Recruit and appoint First Responders, book your First Responder training, and plan ongoing support for First Responders. We recommend First Responder training in person if possible, but if it’s not possible to bring them together in person or if there are COVID restrictions in place, it can be delivered as an interactive and engaging online training. There’s an option for a Shine expert to participate in quarterly First Responder peer support meetings, which is one good way to ensure your First Responders are well-supported.
  3. Draft your domestic/family violence information for staff to meet DVFREE Tick requirements, especially including a definition of domestic/family violence and help-seeking pathways. Most employers make this information accessible as a section on their intranet.
  4. Plan your staff awareness raising strategy – you can utilise Shine’s free online learning module for this purpose, create your own learning module, and/or plan other creative ways of raising awareness amongst staff about domestic violence and your help-seeking pathways.
  5. Create a statement from leadership (ideally your CEO or most senior leader) that supports your staff domestic violence programme. We can provide examples of these.
  6. Plan your manager training rollout. This can be using the DVFREE online learning programme, with access provided as part of the DVFREE Tick fee and renewal fee. However, we recommend providing live training if possible at least for initial manager training as a best practice option, and which can be either in-person or online (Zoom is our preferred platform). Larger employers may want to have their own trainer(s) accredited to deliver this training. See the DVFREE TICK CRITERIA for details about manager training requirements.

Once you sign your DVFREE Tick Agreement, we can also provide some additional resources that can help get you started, such as leadership statement examples, a co-branded poster template, a sample Workplace Safety Planning tool, etc.

The DVFREE Tick Fee

Your DVFREE Tick fee pays for all the support needed to achieve the DVFREE Tick. Specifically, it includes:

  • Consultation to review written documents required by the DVFREE Tick (policy, procedures, staff information)
  • One inhouse group training for your First Responders (20 max in person, 16 max online)
  • Annual license and option to upload the DVFREE Manager Online Learning Programme onto your LMS (Learning Management System), or the programme can be accessed via Shine’s LMS.
  • *One inhouse live training for your managers (30 max in person, 16 max online)
  • Annual license and option to upload the DVFREE introductory online workplace learning module files, and DVFREE pre-training learning (for First Responder training) module files, onto your LMS (which can otherwise be accessed via Shine’s website/LMS)
  • Auditing your organisation for the DVFREE Tick
  • Once you are provided DVFREE Tick accreditation, the right to use DVFREE Trademarks for one year (after that is dependent on maintaining/renewing your DVFREE Tick)

*DVFREE Tick partners have the option of accrediting  internal trainer(s) to deliver live DVFREE Manager training within your organisation, which is generally a more cost-effective and sustainable approach for larger employers.

DVFREE Tick Renewal

After being awarded the DVFREE Tick, there is a two-yearly renewal cycle, with ongoing requirements for maintaining and renewing your organisation’s DVFREE Tick. This primarily involves continuing to meet DVFREE Tick training requirements, promoting the support available to employees impacted by domestic violence at least annually, and a bi-annual audit to ensure your organisation continues to meet all criteria. 

We update the DVFREE Tick criteria from time to time as we learn about what works and in response to changes in the legislative environment, etc. We will update you with any changes to the DVFREE Tick criteria that may require action on your part. Otherwise, the renewal audit process is likely to mostly involve confirming that the evidence provided for your previous DVFREE Tick audit is still current, or providing us with any updates to relevant documents.

The DVFREE Tick renewal fee covers all support needed to maintain/renew your DVFREE Tick. The DVFREE Tick Renewal fee includes:

  • Consultation to review any new or updated documents required by the DVFREE Tick requirements
  • One inhouse group training (or refresher training, or combined refresher and new) for your First Responders per year, either in person (max 20) or online (max 16)
  • Annual license to have the DVFREE Manager Online Learning Programme on your LMS (Learning Management System), or the programme can be accessed via Shine’s LMS.
  • *One inhouse live training for your managers (30 max in person, 16 max online)
  • Any updates to the DVFREE online workplace learning module files and DVFREE First Responder pre-training learning module files if you have these on your Learning Management System
  • Option for a DVFREE expert to participate quarterly in your First Responder peer support meetings to help with specialist input and feedback, or provide and/or lead discussion on workplace domestic violence scenarios
  • A bi-annual renewal audit in the last half of the second year of the renewal period
  • With renewal of your DVFREE Tick accreditation, the right to use DVFREE Trademarks for one year after your accreditation (beyond one year is subject to maintaining/renewing your DVFREE Tick)

The DVFREE Tick Renewal fee includes manager training for small employers.

The DVFREE Tick requires that managers  participate in bi-annual refresher training, which may be using the online manager learning programme or at live training delivered either in-person or online (by a Shine trainer or your DVFREE accredited trainer).

“'It stands out to me that nearly half of people experiencing violence at home are likely to talk to a work colleague. That makes it all the more important that our employees know we are an organisation that is approachable and will be understanding through tough times.  Our DVFREE Tick is an ongoing commitment to our people that we will show care in their time of need.”

— Catherine McGrath - Westpac NZ CEO

“The DVFREE customer response training reinforces being the bridge to help our customers, opens our eyes to signs and provides real life examples that we can apply to our job - it was very practical, with great facilitation.”

— IAG Care Team member training evaluation

“With specialist support from Shine, we are able to provide our people with a work environment where those affected by domestic violence are able to and feel supported to speak up, are treated with dignity and empathy, and where safety and privacy is protected."

— Catherine Dixon - Suncorp New Zealand Executive General Manager People and Culture

"It is our duty as a responsible employer to ensure our people feel safe and supported at work. Shine’s DVFREE programme has given us the knowledge and tools to be confident in how we respond to any of our people who experience domestic violence.”

— David Stevenson, General Manager, Parliamentary Service

“The model we have developed with Shine has given our managers tools to deal with some of the issues faced by our people. The systems we have put in place are already working." The Ministry of Justice was the first state sector agency awarded the DVFREE Tick. CE Andrew Bridgman urged other public sector organisations to follow its lead.

— Andrew Bridgman, Chief Executive, Ministry of Justice