BCBS programs work to raise awareness about domestic violence

Published August 25, 2016

Domestic violence threatens the health and wellbeing of men, women and children across the country. In fact, domestic violence is so prevalent that one in four women will be a victim of domestic violence in her lifetime. Acting on the belief that everyone deserves to be healthy and safe, Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) companies have dedicated programs to provide support for victims and the prevention of domestic violence in their communities.

In California, the Blue Shield of California Foundation (the Foundation) and Blue Shield of California’s Shield Cares (Shield Cares) teams are working together to end domestic violence through an integrated campaign that includes supporting local domestic violence organizations and internal activities to raise employee awareness.

Since 2002, the Foundation has invested more than $70 million to support domestic violence service providers in California, ensuring that essential services such as hotlines, shelters, counseling, and legal aid are available to those in need, while also engaging communities to address domestic violence across all economic, social, racial and ethnic groups.

Through a 2015 “Road Show,” Shield Cares highlighted the work of the Foundation, promoted local domestic violence organizations and provided employees with a safe and open forum for discussion and support. Blue Shield employees donated to the Foundation’s non-profit partners with a 2:1 match from the company, and made in-kind donations – things like supplies and services - to domestic violence shelters. Blue Shield also held an internal Blue Wears Purple Day, during which more than 3,000 Blue Shield of California employees took the “No More” pledge. Finally, Blue Shield created a workplace domestic violence policy, supporting employees affected by domestic violence and training managers to recognize and support employees who may be experiencing domestic violence.

In Kansas, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas Foundation has committed to multi-year funding of Jana’s Campaign’s “Love Doesn't Hurt” curriculum to help build safer and healthier environments for thousands of Kansas students.

Jana's Campaign is a statewide non-profit organization in Kansas whose mission is to prevent domestic and gender-based violence. “Love Doesn't Hurt” is an evidence-based curriculum aimed at engaging middle and high school students to have knowledge and take action surrounding the issue of teen gender violence. Jana's Campaign staff partnered with Kansas Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS) instructors and the Future, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) to implement the program as a two-pronged approach, focusing on teacher training for classroom instruction and co-curricular community service projects.

In addition to programs aimed at the prevention of domestic violence, BCBS companies are investing in programs to address a number of critical health issues in their communities. To learn more about the ways BCBS companies are working to make a difference, download the full Investing in America's Health report.