Unfortunately, a high amount of employees may have experienced workplace violence. If you know your rights, you won’t be afraid of letting them out to the officials to investigate the leading causes, for the felon can do it again with other people. So speaking up will not only grant you safety at work, but it will guarantee the safety of others.

In this blog, we investigate the types of workplace violence and the assessments to make to prevent them from happening.


What is workplace violence?

According to OSHA, we define workplace violence as any act or threat of physical violence, intimidation, harassment, or other threatening behavior in the workplace. The statistics indicate that about 2 million workers report violence at the workplace each year. However, the actual number of victims is probably much higher since many events do not get reported.


Who is more vulnerable to workplace violence?

Workplace violence is on the rise. Half of the professionals report that their organization has experienced workplace violence incidents in some way. This went up to 36 percent in 2012. In addition, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has reported that 1 out of 7 Americans does not feel safe at work.

It’s proven that the healthcare industry is the most vulnerable to workplace violence, often conducted by unruly or disgruntled patients. Also, it is believed that work in retail is at high risk.

Some workers are at a higher risk, especially workers who exchange money with the public. For instance, the ones who transfer:

  • Passengers
  • Goods
  • Services

This includes employers who work alone or in small groups at late night or early morning, in high-crime zones, or cases when they have extensive contact with the public, including:

  • Visiting nurses
  • Phone and cable TV installers
  • Probation officers
  • Retail workers
  • Community workers like gas and water utility employees
  • Letter carriers
  • Psychiatric evaluators
  • Taxi drivers


What can employers do to decrease workplace violence?

OSHA’s General Duty Clause indicates that all employers must provide a place of employment free from hazards that cause serious harm. Here are some tips all employers should know about to prevent violence:

  • Have a written zero-tolerance policy and prepare a written prevention program
  • Provide workplace violence training, including what to report or what to do during an incident.
  • Encourage reporting specific incidents. Indicate reporting easy and confidential
  • Consider using outside professional aid to provide threat training and physical security assessment

The most practical thing employers can do is to generate a zero-tolerance policy toward workplace violence. Furthermore, employers can offer additional protections, including:

  • Encouraging employees to report all threats of workplace violence
  • Inform victims of the right to prosecute the violator
  • Report violence to the local police immediately
  • Provide medical evaluation and treatment after the occurrence
  • Look for all violent incidents and threats, monitor violence trends by type or circumstance, and establish corrective actions
  • Hold stress debriefing sessions/posttraumatic counseling services to help workers recover


What are the types of workplace violence?

As the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) claims, workplace violence divides into four categories:

As the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) claims, workplace violence divides into four categories:

  • Criminal Intent: This type of crime is followed by another crime such as shoplifting, robbery, trespassing, or acts of terrorism.
  • Customer/Client: This case may include a customer, patient, client, student, or inmate while performing business.
  • Worker on Worker, The felon of this type of violence is an employee or past employee of the business threatening or attacking other employees in the workplace.
  • Personal Relationship: The violator of this type does not relate to the business but has a relationship with the victim. This category includes domestic violence for people who are violated or threatened while at work.


What are some other assessments to help decrease workplace violence?

NIOSH has generated the following guidelines to prevent violence for workers who are in direct contact with the public:

  • Utilize physical barriers to keep the workers safe
  • Assess silent alarm systems/panic buttons
  • Use raised platforms and mirrors
  • Use effective lighting
  • Use height markers on exit doors
  • Ensure sufficient staffing levels
  • Use drop safes and post signs
  • Control or limit access to the facility
  • Use video monitoring equipment
  • Install locks on staff-only doors

You cannot prevent workplace violence by 100 percent. However, a concerned and well-informed employer always tries to generate policies to increase awareness, training, and physical security.


Let’s recap!

Workplace violence can be severe or mild. In both cases, informing the concerned officials will develop productivity at work.

Suppose you think you have been assaulted or violated at work. In that case, you can visit occupational health centers to help you get over the consequences. SNOHC can be a perfect option in southern Nevada. Feel free to contact our professionals at any time of the day.

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