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Occupational health and safety professionals' attitudes toward workplace violence.
Gates DM; Horstman SW
Appl Occup Environ Hyg 1995 Feb; 10(2):79-83
A project was designed to examine the attitudes of occupational and safety professionals regarding workplace violence and to support the need for a more in depth study of such violence. Three focus groups met to discuss the topics. The first session included five safety directors responsible for worker safety in companies ranging from 225 to 4,000 employees. The second session included eight occupational health nurses and one physician. Four of the nurses were from the same large company. The size of the companies ranged from less than 50 to over 4,000 employees. The third meeting took place at the Governor's Health and Safety Conference and the participants included safety personnel, occupational nurses, and security and human resource personnel. All three groups agreed that violence was an increasing problem at the workplace. Many of the participants said that they do worry about the problem. Many of the nurses and physicians felt strongly that their job duties placed them at risk. Participants indicated that drugs and alcohol, society, deterioration of the family, autocratic management style, harder work for less pay and benefits, and a decrease in morality were causative factors in workplace violence. All three groups indicated that violence can be prevented in certain situations. They felt that violence can sometimes be predicted, particularly if threats are made. Most participants agreed that employer response to workplace violence has been primarily in the form of disciplinary action after an incident occurs. Another concern of the groups was the increase of domestic violence in the workplace.
NIOSH-Author; Workplace-studies; Job-stress; Mental-stress; Risk-analysis; Psychological-factors; Health-care-personnel; Occupational-health
Issue of Publication
Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division