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FEMALE ABUSE AND THE WORKPLACE

Updated on February 3, 2015

It could happen to you!

Abusers can be the highly regarded and soft-spoken professional or the guy in front of you in the grocery check-out line. They’re a master of hiding their abusive behavior until you’re already deep into a relationship. Smart women can find themselves in abusive relationships. It could happen to you, to your daughter, sister, mother, or employee. And, this violence can happen at your workplace. Abusers know where their target is when they’re at work.

24% of workplace violence is related to personal relationships!

It’s a fact that 12.7 percent of all female violent crimes were committed while the victim was working or on duty. And, about half of all workplace crimes go unreported. Approximately 24% of workplace violence is related to personal relationships. If you hear or sense something is wrong or out of the norm with an employee it’s a necessity to document these incidents. Signs of potential workplace violence could be things such as an employee’s acquaintance drives by frequently, drops in, or places frequent and / or unwarranted phone calls. Or, that your employee herself is showing signs of stress or abuse. Investigations show that approximately 50 percent of abused women are harassed at work.

Let’s try to prevent this violence!

Let's protect one another. Sadly employers don’t look into Workplace Violence (WPV) strategic initiatives and are unequipped to handle potential situations. It is the employer’s responsibility to maintain a safe workplace free of violence in general. OSHA has guidelines for late night retail [OSHA 2004], but companies not under OSHA jurisdiction may not be aware of this information. Potential sources of information valuable to businesses include police department crime prevention units, Web-based violence prevention and security sites, and insurance companies. Even unions have pushed for identification of workplace violence as an occupational issue, not just a criminal justice issue, and support voluntary implementation of workplace violence prevention programs. Even without a specific threat, all employees should report any behavior they have witnessed that they regard potentially threatening or violent or which could endanger the health or safety of an employee when the behavior has been carried out on a company-controlled site or is connected to company employment or company business. Employees are responsible for making this report regardless of the relationship between the individual who initiated the threatening behavior and the person or persons being threatened.

Let’s come together to help one another.

If a woman is being stalked or afraid of domestic violence she must seek a network of support and contact not only the police, but friends, family, and workplace management. Everyone needs a safe place to seek shelter and most definitely a plan of action no matter where they might be if they find them self in a “situation.” Let’s come together to help one another. If you own a business you owe it to your employees to provide documented company policy that plainly indicates what constitutes workplace violence and how to handle any situation. Management must show commitment to provide excellent communication, confidentiality, and teamwork complete with protocols in place to protect one another.

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