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Denise Hughes
UPMC Health Plan

Workpartners’ Employee Assistance Program Includes Critical Employer Resources to Support Workers Facing Intimate Partner Violence

UPMC Health Plan CEO Diane Holder Recognized for UPMC’s Leadership in Initiating Work that Launched the Successful “Standing Firm” Products and Organization

Pittsburgh (Oct. 27, 2021) – UPMC’s Workpartners®, a people activation company, today issued a Domestic Violence Awareness Month reminder that businesses utilizing Workpartners’ LifeSolutions Employee Assistance Program (EAP) product can access Standing Firm’s business-focused resources to provide appropriate support and assistance to coworkers or employees facing intimate partner violence.

The tools, offered through Standing Firm, were originally developed locally by community health care clinicians and leaders, including several from UPMC and UPMC Health Plan. UPMC Health Plan President & CEO Diane Holder was recently named Standing Firm’s "Champion of the Year" in recognition of her historic and ongoing commitment to addressing partner violence. Standing Firm is a recognized expert in addressing partner violence as a workplace and workforce issue by using best practices training principles to educate employers on the financial, safety and human costs of partner violence and how to provide appropriate, safe support for employees in need.

“We are pleased that UPMC Health Plan and Workpartners continue to support the guiding principles of Standing Firm by including our training resources in their EAP offerings,” said Beth Lewis, Executive Director, Standing Firm. “There is a clear business case to support the idea that employers have a crucial role to play in protecting the workforce from violence related to partner abuse and in improving productivity and worker health by addressing partner violence.”

The development of what is now Standing Firm started with UPMC and other regional clinicians and leaders acknowledging that partner violence is a shared problem. The issue of workplace violence—often driven by an employee’s intimate partner—began to emerge as a major public health issue in the mid-to-late 1990s, when we at UPMC started to look at this issue through an employer lens. By 2000, violence-related incidents were the second-leading cause of death on the job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and, today, intimate partner violence remains the leading source of violence in the workplace. Between 2003 and 2008, 142 women were murdered in their workplace by an intimate partner—that was 22 percent of all workplace homicides among women.

This alarming trend made many leaders at UPMC, especially Holder and others with backgrounds in behavioral health, recognize a very serious problem that society still had not fully acknowledged—but could no longer ignore, leading to additional research and collaboration with the Women’s Shelter and Center of Greater Pittsburgh to change the dialogue on partner violence and engage the business community in advancing solutions and supports.

“As part of the team who first recognized 20 years ago that we need to change the conversation about domestic violence and recognize it is both a public health and a business issue, I am proud that Standing Firm’s critical support resources are available to our LifeSolutions Employee Assistance Program (EAP) members,” said Holder. “I believe that the collective effort behind the beginning of Standing Firm has helped evolve perceptions about partner violence from something that is not discussed outside the home to something that is now widely and openly recognized as both a business and a public health issue.”

Standing Firm provides policy, education and resources to employers who recognize domestic violence as a health, safety, and equity concern for their employees. Access to these critical resources is included as part of Workpartners’ LifeSolutions product, which includes full access to Standing Firm training as part of its EAP services.

“Intimate partner violence has health, social and physical costs—our EAP offerings empower businesses to help their employees in need both because it makes good business sense to do so and because it is the right thing to do,” said Dave Weir, President, Workpartners. “Our LifeSolutions product design reflects this reality that partner violence is everyone’s business.”

To access Standing Firm resources through LifeSolutions, member employers and employees can call 1-800-647-3327. Employers interested in learning more about how LifeSolutions can support workforce health, safety, and productivity can call 1-866-229-3507 or email


About UPMC Insurance Services

Serving 4 million members, UPMC Insurance Services is owned and operated by UPMC, a world-renowned health care provider and insurer based in Pittsburgh, Pa. UPMC Insurance Services includes commercial products from UPMC Health Plan for groups as well as individuals. Commercial products also include workers' compensation and employee assistance from nationally known Workpartners®. Government products include Medicare Advantage (UPMC for Life); special needs plans for those eligible for Medicare and Medical Assistance (UPMC for Life Complete Care and UPMC Community HealthChoices); Medical Assistance (UPMC for You); and Children's Health Insurance Program (UPMC for Kids). Community Care Behavioral Health, one of the nation's largest nonprofit managed care behavioral health organizations, offers a full range of services to Commercial and Medical Assistance members. For more information, visit

About Workpartners

Workpartners, The People Activation Company, is part of UPMC. We address human capital challenges with a holistic approach, integrating products and services such as leave and disability, employee assistance, benefits administration, on-site services, and health and wellness services. Our data analytics capabilities share critical insights to employers, converting data into actionable intelligence at an individual employee level. Powered by robust predictive analytics, clinical excellence, and progressive thought leadership, Workpartners delivers people-centric human capital management strategies. Workpartners is headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA, with offices and people around the United States, and serves high-performance organizations in more than 200 industry verticals across the country. For more information, visit