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Domestic violence costly to global economy, report says

KAMAU MAICHUHIEBy KAMAU MAICHUHIE
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At least 80 million working women across 107 countries have experienced domestic violence and abuse in the last one year, a survey by audit firm KPMG has revealed.

In Kenya, the survey estimates that 1.9 million working women have experienced domestic violence over the same period.

The Workplace Impacts of Domestic Violence and Abuse report reveals the damaging impact of domestic violence on careers and businesses globally.

The survey commissioned by Vodafone focused on the prevalence of domestic violence in nine countries namely Kenya, South Africa, Spain, Turkey, Germany, India, Italy, Ireland, and United Kingdom.

In each of the countries, a large proportion of victims of domestic violence and abuse — between 41 and 88 per cent — reported that it had impacted their career progression.

More than one third (38 per cent) of victims surveyed, said they suffered from reduced productivity and 22 per cent said they sometimes stopped going to work and/or would take days off.

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In Kenya, the study estimates that more than half a million (505,000) working women have taken time off work because of domestic abuse in the past year.

ECONOMIC OUTPUT LOST

The survey indicates that about $50 million (Sh5 billion) in economic output is lost by Kenyan businesses each year as a result of absences related to domestic abuse.

“Individuals who reported having been victims of domestic violence and abuse were asked about how this had affected their working life. Evidence suggests they may be absent from work for additional days as a result of violence,” the report reads in part.

The survey estimates that $2.1 billion (Sh212 billion) in economic output is lost each year as a result of domestic-related abuse on workers.

It also shows that four million women missed out on a promotion as a result of domestic violence — suffering an annual average salary loss of Sh290,000 ($2,900) per woman.