Report: 13% of federal workers witness workplace violence

Merit Report Workplace Violence “Prevention and mitigation of workplace violence is challenging,” said Susan Tsui Grundmann, MSPB’s chairman, in a statement issued with the report. “Limiting physical access to federal workplaces is not enough, because the vast majority of perpetrators of federal workplace violence are individuals who, for the most part, have a legitimate reason to be in the workplace.” Categorization of workplace violence The report suggests that the perpetrators of workplace violence are generally categorized into four different types based on their relationship to the workplace. Perpetrators are either internal to an organization (employees and former employees) or external to an organization (individuals whose only link to the organization is to do violence; customers, clients, patients, or others to whom the organization provides a service; or individuals whose connection to the organization stems from a personal relationship with one of its members—for example, an employee’s abusive intimate partner.) While violence is not frequent, conflict is “fairly commonplace,” according to a 2005 MSPB survey. It said 49 percent of supervisors in the previous year and 37 percent of all employees in the previous two years had dealt with at least one serious conflict. The 2010 survey found that 73 percent of employees “agreed that their agencies take sufficient steps to ensure their safety from violence occurring at their workplace.” That doesn’t say much for the others, which is a pretty good chunk, according to the Washington Post. While no program can completely eliminate workplace violence, any examples of threats and intimidation “demand the attention of federal managers because they poison the work environment and may lead to more serious physical violence,” Grundmann said.  ]]>

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