Protecting Workers from Workplace Violence

 Photo Credit: Sira Anamwong Free Digital Photos

Both general industry and construction work sites present unique work related hazards. We realize the importance of using personal protective equipment properly and conducting safety talks so employees can protect themselves from injury, lost time accidents, and possible fatalities. But do we overlook the fact that employees are hurt and killed on the job because employers do not have and implement a Workplace Violence Prevention Program.

According to OSHA, violence in the workplace is a serious safety and health issue. Homicide is the fourth-leading cause of fatal occupational injury in the United States. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI), there were 521 workplace homicides in the preliminary count of 2009 in the United States, out of a total of 4,349 fatal work injuries.

Workplace Violence at our facilities can be controlled if we consider what puts employees at risk in the first place. For employees working at a facility, simply improving lighting, locking gates, and employing security guards can greatly reduce the risk of the public entering the facility for the purposes of damaging property and harming employees.

Protecting workers in the field presents more of a challenge. Consider the following:

Where is the employee’s work location?
What is the employee doing?
What is the time of day?
Are they using expensive equipment or wearing expensive personal items?
Are they in direct contact with the public providing customer service?
Are they alone and should there be a second employee with them when conditions are unsafe?

Okay, so what can employers do to help protect their employees from Workplace Violence? A good place to start is to develop and implement a Workplace Violence Protection Program. A good plan along with employee awareness training is the first step toward reducing workplace violence.

For more information on how you can develop a Workplace Violence Prevention Program (WVPP) contact us at: United Alliance Services Corporation.

Office: 877.399.1698       email: