June 6, 2016
Luxury conglomerate Kering is mobilizing its employees against violence with the creation of a training program in partnership with the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence and the National Network to End Domestic Violence.
Following the success of a similar program in France, Italy and the United Kingdom, the initiative now comes to the United States, giving its 1,200 employees based in the country education in how to intervene a situation arises. With a large portion of its workforce and customer base female, Kering frequently takes up initiatives focused on bettering the lives of women.
Employees taking action
On June 6 in New York, Kering’s chief sustainability officer Marie-Claire Daveu, NAESV president Johnson Hostler and NNEDV executive vice president Cindy Southworth will officially launch this initiative.
In the training program created, which some of Kering’s corporate and maison employees have already begun, an emphasis is placed on combatting stereotypes and creating a supportive workplace for survivors.
NAESV and NNEDV have a combined 45 years of local experience. Both organizations’ actions largely involve educating consumers and counseling policymakers.
“When one considers that up to 60 percent of victims in the U.S. lose their job due to reasons stemming from domestic violence each year, we cannot but take action,” said François- Henri Pinault, chairman and CEO of Kering and president of the Kering Corporate Foundation, in a statement.
“The workplace can provide an escape and a means of financial independence for those experiencing violence; a support system we hope to further reinforce through the Kering Foundation’s new partnership with NAESV and NNEDV," he said. "In providing our group’s employees with the support they require to support others, I hope we can build on the momentum of positive change taking place worldwide.”
This is Kering’s first anti-domestic violence campaign in the U.S., however this comes a year after the group took on sexual assault in education.
French conglomerate Kering’s corporate foundation is making a commitment to end sexual violence on college campuses in the United States with the launch of two partnerships in 2015.
At an award ceremony in New York last June, Kering awarded We End Violence with a $34,000 grant, and also announced its support of Generation Progress’ “It’s On Us” campaign. Championing women’s rights is a large focus of Kering’s corporate outreach in other parts of the world, and bringing the same approach to the U.S. will enable the group to make an impact to more individuals (see story).