Violence in the Workplace

Employers have statutory obligations to provide and promote a safe and violence-free work environment.  Employees expect to be safe at work, as do vendors and customers who visit the workplace.  Incidents of violence, though relatively low, can destroy people, families and entire organizations.  Employers need to implement strong policies intended to avert workplace violence and to properly confront it when it occurs.  A Threat Management Team should be formed to adopt sound strategy to confront these incidents in advance.  You can’t make it up as you go along!

Almost always there are signals indicating the potential for violence. Refusal to cooperate or follow instructions and argumentative responses are flags to watch for.  Inappropriate or disruptive behavior should be noted and dealt with immediately. 

If verbal and then written warnings don’t work, referral to an EAP or outside counseling may be called for.  In other words, you have to get out in front of it.

A professional background investigation of the employee might be appropriate including criminal, civil, driver histories and registration of weapons, if any.  If the apparent threat justifies it, law enforcement might be notified, as well.

Both before and after incident reports would include interviews of witnesses, gathering electronic or video evidence and carefully documenting the facts.

Allied Business Solutions has worked for major corporations in assessing employee-based threats, as well as conducting discreet investigations to prevent violence.

Getting the facts…that’s what we do!

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