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The federal Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act includes a violence prevention standard that requires employers to have a written workplace violence prevention plan.
Indicators of potential violence by an employee include:
An example of how an employer can encourage employees to report suspected threats of violence is by:
When a risk of workplace violence has been identified in a domestic violence situation, an employer’s obligations cease if the employee refuses to contact police or to cooperate with the employer’s security plan
On average 1.7 million workers are injured each year, and more than 800 die as a result of workplace violence
There is usually warning signs prior to work place violence, which could include argumentative or uncooperative, serious family or financial problem, Challenges peers and authority figures, Shows an extreme interest in, or obsession with weapons.
Sometimes it isn’t what someone says, but what their body is “doing”. Use caution if you see someone who shows one or more of the following “non-verbal” signs or body language: Flushed or pale face, sweating, pacing, restless, or repetitive movements, signs of extreme fatigue (dark circles under eyes), trembling or shaking.
The most important component of any workplace violence prevention program is management commitment. Management commitment is best communicated in a written policy.
Considers factors such as workplace lay-out, use of signs, locks or physical barriers, lighting, and electronic surveillance. Building security is one instance where workplace design issues are very important. For example, you should consider: