2019Workplace Violence

Stop Workplace Violence

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) – the world’s largest HR professional society representing 300,000 members in more than 165 countries – has released research that reveals nearly half of surveyed HR professionals (48 percent) said their organization had at some point experienced workplace violence.

SHRM Workplace Violence Research

The total of those HR professionals who say workplace violence has occurred is up from 36 percent in 2012 and includes incidences of harassment, intimidation, physical assaults, and homicides, according to a survey of 1,416 SHRM members conducted in February 2019.

Since the workplace is no safe haven from shootings and other violent attacks, the SHRM Workplace Violence Resource Center offers resources to help HR make sure workers know how to stay safe in the face of a threat and respond effectively to violent incidents in the workplace.

In addition, SHRM has released online toolkit – Understanding Workplace Violence Prevention and Response – that provides information and resources to help SHRM members create a prevention plan, recognize warning signs, implement a response team, and respond to violent incidents in the workplace.

“There’s naturally a lot of fear when people think of workplace violence,” Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., SHRM President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), stated in an article about the survey. “But preparing and providing employees with hands-on training helps empower them to react and take action in the event of a worst-case scenario.”

In the wake of a February 2019 workplace violence incident in Aurora, Illinois – where an employee killed five co-workers while being fired from his job – SHRM published articles that showed the dangers HR faces from workplace violence and why a background check of the shooter did not reveal a past conviction.

According to the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 458 of the 5,147 fatal injuries that happened in a workplace in 2017 were homicides, and approximately 15 percent of those homicides were caused by co-workers or work associates.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) defines workplace violence as “any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening disruptive behavior that occurs at the work site.” OSHA reports nearly two million American workers are victims of workplace violence each year.

More Information about Workplace Violence from ESR

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global background check firm – offers background check services to help employers reduce issues that can lead to workplace violence. To read more ESR News blogs about workplace violence, please visit www.esrcheck.com/wordpress/tag/workplace-violence/.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

© 2019 Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – Making copies or using of any part of the ESR News Blog or ESR website for any purpose other than your own personal use is prohibited unless written authorization is first obtained from ESR.


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