The workplace is often where many women experiencing domestic violence, feel safest.
And Illawarra Women's Health Centre general manager Sally Stevenson stresses financial independence is absolutely critical to help them escape and recover from domestic violence.
That's why she welcomed the A Workplace Guide to Preventing and Responding to Domestic Violence, developed by Australian Services Union members.
It was no coincidence the Illawarra launch of the guide was held at the Warilla centre on Thursday.
The women's centre is in the electorate of Shellharbour, which still has the most incidents of domestic violence in NSW.
"And there are pockets and suburbs within the Shellharbour LGA that have very high rates of domestic and family violence and aren't shifting," Ms Stevenson said.
"We need to use as many strategies as we can to support the community here to both escape from, recover from and feel safe from domestic violence."
There were 1330 domestic violence incidents recorded in the Illawarra region in 2018
"Today is really important because domestic violence is deeply embedded in our culture and it extends across all aspects of our life and in particular the workplace is a site that can be used to promote safety and support and education around domestic violence," Ms Stevenson said.
"And the ASU's guide is fantastic and it outlines how workplaces can support women who are trying to escape domestic violence.
Domestic violence is the leading cause of death, disability and illness among woman aged 15 to 45
"The workplace is not just about going to work. It is a community of itself. It has power in what it can do for women, especially by allowing them to maintain their employment and have certain practices and policies around that.
"This helps women keep their financial independence, which is absolutely critical to escaping and recovering from domestic violence."
This view was shared by ASU secretary for NSW and ACT, Natalie Lang, who said "we know that women who have financial independence are far more able to leave violence and to stay removed from violence once they leave".
"It takes on average 141 hours of preparation and $18,000 to leave violence," she said.
"To have your job and your income at threat will often force women to make a heartbreaking decision about whether they can leave violence."
Ms Lang said family violence was also a workplace issue and needed a workplace response.
"A lot of employers want to be more supportive of women who are experiencing violence but don't necessarily feel equipped to do so. This guide equips them to help."
The guide, which recognises the important role employers and colleagues can play in helping women, follows ASU's long-running We Won't Change campaign for universal access to paid family leave.
Domestic violence is the leading cause of death, disability and illness among woman aged 15 to 45.
"We really support the work of the unions, especially the ASU," Ms Stevenson said.
"We think it is absolutely critical that at minimum all employers have to have access to 10 days paid leave for a family and domestic violence.
"It is part of the puzzle for people to escape and recover from domestic violence."