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​Domestic Violence – Victims Protection Act

The Domestic Violence – Victims’ Protection Act comes into force on 1 April 2019 and amends the Employment Relations, Holidays and Human Rights Acts, setting out ways employers can provide help to employees currently affected by domestic violence or who have experienced domestic violence in the past.

The new law entitles employees affected by domestic violence to up to 10 days of paid domestic violence leave per year, in order to deal with the effects of domestic violence. Employees will be able to take this leave as needed – similar to the existing sick leave and bereavement leave provisions.

They will also be able to request a short-term variation to their working arrangements (up to two months or shorter) to which the employer must respond to urgently and within 10 working days. The variation can include changes to hours of work, location and duties of work. This is similar, and in addition to, the existing rights employees have to make a flexible working request.

The law also explicitly prohibits an employee being treated adversely in their employment on the grounds that they are, or are suspected to be, a person affected by domestic violence.

More information can be found here:

Rest and Meal Breaks


The Employment Relations Amendment Act 2018 provisions relating to meal and rest breaks take effect from 6 May 2019.

Rest and Meal Breaks

Employers must provide all employees with meal and rest breaks which conform with the requirements of the Act in each work period.

A “work period” runs from the time when the employee commences work and ends when the employee ceases work in accordance with the employee’s terms and conditions of employment. All authorised breaks (whether paid or not) are included within the definition of work period.

Rest periods provided in accordance with the Act must be paid whilst meal breaks are not required to be paid.

More information can be found here:

Sue Harrison | National People & Capability Manager