Is Workplace Violence a Risk at Your Job?
Violence can affect workers at several different types of jobs. Pizza delivery drivers can be robbed, and mental healthcare workers are sometimes attacked by patients. Bank tellers may be put in harm’s way during armed robberies, and the same goes for convenience store workers. According to OSHA, workplace violence is the fourth leading cause of workplace deaths in the country. It is sadly the primary cause of death among young workers.
Not everyone who experiences workplace violence dies. This is because OSHA’s definition of workplace violence includes threatening behavior, harassment and intimidation. There are ways that workers and employers can protect themselves from becoming victims.
How Can Employers Prevent Workplace Violence?
Like many on-the-job dangers, workplace violence can be prevented when precautions are undertaken.
Zero tolerance policies: OSHA recommends establishing zero-tolerance policies for violence. These policies cover workers, patients, clients, visitors and contractors.
Preparation programs: Violence prevention programs should include the entire workplace. This way employees know what to do during emergencies.
Work Site assessment: OSHA recommends assessing work sites to discover ways to prevent workplace violence. This can include locking doors after a certain time, or developing protocols for handling robberies. Assessments should include staff members and management.
Health care workers utilize these programs to prevent assaults from patients. Boston and California have considered legislation that would conduct annual risk assessments, develop written violence prevention plans, and create response teams for staff members who fall victim to violence.
Workers who are injured on the job by violence may have options to receive workers compensation or other benefits.
The Ohio workers compensation attorneys at Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC can help injured workers discover which options are available.