Category Archives: Workplace Violence/Bullying

Employee Awareness of Workplace Violence Policies and Perceptions for Addressing Perpetrators at Colleges and Universities

Source: Jack L. Howard, Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal, Published online: 29 July 2008
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Most of the research on workplace violence has focused on workplace violence incidents and the development of models to predict and address the phenomenon. The assumption that all organizations are essentially similar in nature underlies this research. However, colleges and universities differ from for-profit businesses. Little, if any, research has been conducted to determine employees’ awareness of workplace violence policies and employee perceptions of potential perpetrators and how to address perpetrators which is necessary for increasing such policies’ effectiveness. The present study examines the awareness of employees at a large, public university in the Midwestern United States concerning WPV. Respondents indicate which sources they perceive to be likely perpetrators of workplace violence, and the actions that organization should take if WPV occurs. Based on this information, steps to increase employee awareness of workplace violence policies in colleges and universities are suggested.

Workplace Homicides in 2007

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 26 August 2008

Workplace homicides rose 13 percent to 610 in 2007 after reaching a series low of 540 in 2006.

Even with the increase, workplace homicides have declined 44 percent from the high of 1,080 reported in 1994.

Workplace homicides involving police officers and supervisors of retail sales workers both saw substantial increases in 2007.

‘My Wife Should Not Have Been Killed!’

Source: Policy and Practice, Vol. 66 no. 2, June 2008

In August 2004, Teri Zenner, a Kansas mental health worker, was killed during a home visit to one of her clients. Her husband, Matt, has made a personal quest to tell Teri’s story and told “Policy & Practice” why he wants to raise the issue of public human service worker safety to a national level.

Human Service Worker Safety: a View From the Top

Source: Mark Washington, Policy and Practice, Vol. 66 no. 2, June 2008

Kentucky had developed an incident reporting system that replaced the outdated paper method of recording incidents and verbal or physical threats of violence by clients. The new system enables staff at all levels to review the incident and diagnose the leading causes.

Violence Against Workers: a Shortcoming in Public Human Services

Source: Stephen R. Fox, Donna Harmon, Policy and Practice, Vol. 66 no. 2, June 2008

There is no national repository of data about violence against human service workers. Yet this issue touches on the single, most overwhelmingly, deeply personal tragedy of life. In this case, the violence includes the killing of those who serve by those who are served.

Security Risk

Source: Michael Fielding, Public Works Magazine, Vol. 139 no. 9, August 1, 2008

Focusing on service in a cynical world.

Although the average citizen thinks public safety employees face the most danger in serving the community, the editors of PUBLIC WORKS suspected that public works employees are equally vulnerable–if not more so. To confirm our belief, we asked readers if they’d ever felt threatened, whether the situation was resolved to the satisfaction of both parties, and how department operations may have changed as a result.

“Out of Control”: Violence against Personal Support Workers in Long-Term Care

Source: Albert Banerjee, Tamara Daly, Hugh Armstrong, Pat Armstrong, Stirling Lafrance, and Marta Szebehely, Institute for Social Research at York University, February 23, 2008

Working in Canadian long-term care is dangerous. But it need not be. This study shows that, while Canadians working in long-term facility care experience violence virtually every day, this is not the case in Nordic countries. Clearly, the high level of violence in Canadian facilities is not a necessary feature of work in long-term care and can be reduced.

This report on the violence experienced by personal support workers draws on an international study comparing long-term, facility-based care across three Canadian provinces (Manitoba, Nova Scotia, and Ontario) and four Nordic European countries (Demark, Finland, Norway and Sweden). It is supported by focused discussions and offers insight into long-term care from the perspective of workers.

Separating Fact from Fiction about Workplace Violence

Source: John J. Matchulat, Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 33, no. 2, Autumn 2007

Consultants, attorneys, and others have publicized some alarming information concerning the extent of violence in the nation’s workplaces. Yet, there is often a vast disparity in the statistics covering seemingly identical types of violence, depending on the author and his or her sources of data. Consequently, observations and conclusions as to the nature and extent of workplace violence vary significantly. Additionally, some generalized statements made about workplace violence, not based on statistical data, convey somewhat confusing and misleading conclusions. This article reconciles the varying statistical information as well as provides insight into whether some commonly-held views about workplace violence are fact, fiction, or possess elements of both.