Violence in the Workplace

Once upon a time, work place killings were extremely rare; in fact, they were practically unheard of. But now it seems as if we hear or read about one happening somewhere every week. Sometimes they’re seemingly random, where a person just “snapped,” but most of the time there were warning signs long before the actual incident. Being safe at work requires you to know who you’re working with and, as much as possible, to get along with them. People who are deeply troubled or are constantly looking for a fight or an argument can make your work life unsafe and miserable, even if they never go off the deep end and resort to violence. And sometimes they do resort to violence. If you’re having trouble with a particular coworker and you fear that they could become violent, burying your head in the sand and ignoring it is not the answer. Neither is hoping that things will somehow just “work themselves out.”

Everyone has a right to a safe work place, and that includes you. Don’t ever ignore an actual or implied threat, or downplay it as a joke. Threats aren’t jokes. If you’re in a situation like this, you need to report it to someone who can do something about it. If possible, bring witnesses. If your direct supervisor or manager won’t deal with the problem, go to the next level of authority. If no one will do anything about the situation, you may just have to find another job. That’s not ideal, but it’s far better than working around unsafe people. As we said, you should try to get along with everyone you work with as much as possible. Try to avoid heated discussions and arguments about religion, politics, personal habits, etc. And don’t offer personal criticisms about people. You may think someone is a lousy parent or has bad personal hygiene habits, but there’s no need to share your opinion with them or anyone else at work.

SHORTCUTS TO WORK SAFETY ARTICLES:

The Facts on Repetitive Stress Injury
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Measures to Prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Preventative Measures: Mice
Other Ergonomic Habits
Leading Cause of Work-Related Deaths
Second Leading Cause of Work-Related Deaths
Violence in the Workplace
Romance at Work
Safety Concerns in an Industrial Setting
Hazardous Materials in an Industrial Setting
Tips When Working With Heavy Machinery
Forklift Safety
Tips For Working With Industrial Machinery
Miscellaneous Work Safety Tips