Staff Space: Empower

Staff Space


Making one’s own decisions; reclaiming the autonomy and dignity eroded by abuse

Acoustically and visually separated spaces within staff areas keep conversations private.
Small conference rooms can be used for confidential conversations with residents, taking crisis calls, staff consultations with supervisors or peers, and quiet moments of reflection. Sturdy, child-safe blinds on interior windows let users block visual access when privacy is needed, but share light across rooms when it is not.

A workspace behind an etched glass separation wall.
Allowing residents access to communal resources saves staff time and affirms residents’ dignity.
Locks on doors require residents to request resources from staff, thus taking time away from their primary focus on advocacy.
A walk-in closet full of clothes

Consider This
“Clothing rooms” pose an ongoing challenge for advocates. Large donations of clothing can quickly overwhelm small rooms. Sorting clothing is not a good use of a highly trained advocate’s or volunteer’s time. Some programs have moved to creating cooperative relationships with local thrift stores: they send all clothing donations to the thrift store, and in exchange get gift certificates for their residents. This alleviates the need for storage, sorting time, and management of a clothing donations room. Some WA programs keep only new sweat pants, shirts and underwear on hand as a stopgap measure for residents who arrive with little or nothing, until they can obtain more clothing at a thrift store or with store vouchers.

Healthy, non-toxic environments benefit residents and staff alike.

Photograph of Cork, Linoleum, Jute, Wool and Wood
Staff appreciate the ability to adjust their environment to meet their needs.

A work desk with lots of workspace and a nearby window.