The potential for violence—or threats of violence—is present in just about every workplace setting. It is important to be aware of factors that increase the risk of work-related violence.
So what exactly is workplace violence?
Workplace violence consists of any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening disruptive behavior that occurs in a workplace setting. It can range from threats and verbal abuse to physical altercations and even homicide. It can affect and involve employees, clients, customers and visitors. Acts of violence and other injuries is currently the third-leading cause of fatal occupational injuries in the United States.
What are the factors that increase the risk of workplace violence?
Certain work factors, processes, and interactions can put people at an increased risk of experiencing workplace violence. The infographic below shows some of the most common factors.
Can workplace violence be prevented?
In most workplaces where risk factors can be recognized, the risk of violence can be prevented or minimized if employers take appropriate precautions. One of the best protections employers can offer their workers is to establish a zero-tolerance policy toward workplace violence. But at the end of the day, violence happens arbitrarily and policies aren’t always followed. Kwema is a company that helps mitigate the safety risks that employees face frequently by providing wearables that activate an emergency protocol if needed. They have already prevented and de-escalated crimes and incidents nationally and internationally.