As businesses begin to reopen at varying rates and capacities, subject to state and federal containment measures, companies will be faced with the challenge of complying with safety standards while accommodating customers and clients. Face coverings, gloves, and social distancing remain standard preventive measures, and numerous jurisdictions have encouraged
Articles Discussing Workplace Violence.
In a bipartisan 251 to 158 vote, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1309, which would require the Department of Labor to develop a standard addressing workplace violence in the health care and social services industry.
Workplace violence, particularly violence involving a firearm, is on the rise. A recent workplace shooting in Aurora, Illinois – by an individual who opened fire during his termination meeting – is just the latest disturbing example. This individual, a middle-aged man with a history of domestic violence, killed five of his co-workers, wounded five police officers, and then turned the gun on himself. Of course, no employer can guarantee a violence-free workplace. However, by assuming that the issue is not “if” but “when,” employers can take steps to reduce the potential for onsite violence, or at least mitigate its impact.
Dear Littler: I’m a vice president of a retail company operating in five states. While visiting one of our stores, I overheard some employees talking about their handguns. One mentioned keeping her firearm in her car, while another said he has a concealed carry permit. I don’t like the idea of firearms in the workplace at all – brought in by employees or customers. Can we create a blanket policy prohibiting all weapons anywhere on company property, including the parking lots?
Every year, nearly two million American workers report having been victims of workplace violence. Sadly, the actual number of cases is likely much higher — many cases go unreported.
Many healthcare workers experience violence in the workplace often resulting from violent behavior by their patients, clients and/or residents. What can healthcare organizations do to improve safety and minimize the risk of workplace violence?
Few topics produce more heated reactions than guns, gun violence, and the Second Amendment. For employers in North and South Carolina, this subject can be especially fraught, as both states are near or at record highs in gun ownership. Moreover, as frightening workplace and school shootings become all too frequent, customers, vendors and employees want to know whether, and to what extent, they can or should arm themselves as they go about their workday.
On August 24, 2017, a former employee entered a popular downtown Charleston, South Carolina restaurant, killed the executive chef, and held a person hostage for several hours, before being shot and injured by the police, ending the standoff. The victim was 37 years old and left behind a wife and two young children. The former employee who is accused of murder had an extensive criminal background, including violent crime, theft, and drug charges, as well as a history of mental illness, according to media reports.
Employers are reminded of a new law that was passed last year, AB 2337, that requires employers with 25 or more employees to give employees notice of their rights under Labor Code sections 230 and 230.1 to take leave and/or to accommodations related to being the victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking.
The recent instances of violence in the workplace remind us of the complex task facing employers. Employers must maintain a safe work environment for employees while operating within the parameters of the many laws that protect employment interests. Reportedly, every year, approximately 2 million Americans fall victim to workplace violence.
For some, just the mention of those words in the same sentence brings to mind a number of horrible scenarios. Others immediately bristle at the idea of perceived infringement of “my right to own a gun.” In between those two reactions are many more that range from fear of workplace violence to balancing Constitutionally protected rights with other concerns.
In the early morning hours of June 12, 2016, 49 innocent people lost their lives in a mass shooting in the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. This mass shooting, the deadliest in U.S. history, has left the City of Orlando shaken, particularly members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ), and Latino/a communities.
The tragic mass shootings in Paris, Colorado Springs, and San Bernardino, in three successive weeks, have had global reverberations. They have also left employers grappling with questions as to what measures they should take—or are legally obligated to take—to keep employees safe from harm in the workplace. A recurring question posed over the last three weeks has been “should we conduct active shooter training?”
Violence is a leading cause of workplace deaths in the last 15 years and causes 48 percent of worker deaths in the retail industry, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
On August 26, 2015, Vester Lee Flanagan, II shot and killed Alison Parker and Adam Ward, two Roanoke, Virginia journalists. Much has been — and will continue to be — written regarding this incident from the perspective of how it relates to gun control, mental health, or race relations. While this incident is extreme and tragic, workplace violence is not uncommon. Employers must assess the preventative measures they have in place and their disaster readiness in order to minimize the likelihood and impact of violence in the workplace.