The Canadian Football League has announced it will start handing lifetime bans to employees found to be perpetrating violence against women.
Following incidents involving the league’s players, the CFL released a staff policy aimed at ‘eradicating violence against women’, a statement said.
The league also hopes to begin provide assistance to victims, as part of the joint initiative with Ending Violence Association of Canada (EVA).
Every employee within the league – including players – will now receive mandatory training on issues of violence against women annually.
For any employees that have any cases of violence confirmed, sanctions that include lifetime bans in serious cases will be handed out.
Other options available to the league include fines and single and multiple-game suspensions, based on the severity and number of incidents.
CFL commissioner Jeffrey Orridge called violence a ‘societal issue’.
“When any CFL workplace, including a CFL football club or one of our offices, receives a report of violence against women involving a CFL employee, we will act,” Metro News
reports Orridge said at a press conference.
“We will assess the situation and the future risk of the woman in question and engage, when necessary, experts that will form a violence-against-women response team. These teams will be made up of social workers and other professionals with experience in dealing with violence against women.”
Orridge said these teams would provide support and referrals to the women affected, including possible counseling support for men, and would be taking into account the needs of any children that are involved.
EVA executive director Tracey Porteous told Metro News
violence against women happens in every business sector, culture, and community.
“Never before have we seen a national organization step up to say violence against women is an epidemic; that we’re going to do something; that corporations and businesses and men have a big role in ending violence.”