The 7th World Conference on Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion, Vienna, Austria, June 6th-9th 2004. Vienna, Austria: Kuratorium für Schutz und Sicherheit/Institut Sicher Leben, 2004 Jun; :342
Problem under study: During the decade from 1993 through 2002, there were an average 827 workplace homicides in the US annually. A typology of workplace violence has been developed that categorizes the range of workplace violence incidents and is useful in thinking about potential prevention strategies. Specifically, the types are: (1) criminal intent incidents in which the perpetrator has no legitimate relationship to the business and is usually committing a crime in conjunction with the violence; (2) customer/client incidents in which the perpetrator has a legitimate relationship with the business and becomes violent while being served by the business; (3) worker on worker incidents in which the perpetrator is an employee or past employee of the business and attacks or threatens another employee; and (4) personal relationship incidents in which the perpetrator does not have a relationship with the workplace, but has a personal relationship with the intended victim. Objectives: To describe the trends in workplace homicide in the by various demographic and occupational categories over the decade from 1993 to 2002. Methodology: The most comprehensive and timely source of workplace homicide data in the is the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) that is compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Data from 1993 through 2002 were analyzed. Results: The total number of workplace homicides has declined dramatically over the 10-year period from 1,074 workplace homicides in 1993 to 609 in 2002 - a 43% decline. This decline did not, however, occur uniformly across all demographic and occupational categories. For example, there was a 46% reduction in workplace homicides among males over the decade while only 28% for females. With regard to race, the numbers declined by 58% among Asians, Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islanders, 47% for Whites, 42% for Hispanic or Latinos, and only 32% for Blacks or African Americans. By type of incident, hitting/kicking/beating deaths remained virtually unchanged with 35 in 1993 and 34 such deaths in 2002, while shooting deaths declined 47% over the period. By time of day, the greatest declines occurred in the categories from 8pm-11:59pm and 12am-3:59am, with 53% and 49% reductions respectively; in comparison, from 8am-11:59am, workplace homicides declined only 12%. Patterns also varied dramatically by occupation with cashiers experiencing a 57% decline while sheriffs, bailiffs, and other law enforcement officers saw a 62% increase over the period. By industry, retail trade homicides declined by 50% over the decade while homicides in the service sector declined 29%. Within services, two sectors of interest which saw virtually no change over the period are hotels and motels with 8 homicides in 1993 and 9 in 2002 and health services which had 14 homicides in 1993 and 13 in 2002. Conclusion: While workplace homicides are declining in the US, the declines are not occurring uniformly across demographic and occupational categories. Future research and prevention efforts should focus on replicating successes and addressing those areas where little or no change has occurred.
The 7th World Conference on Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion, Vienna Austria, June 6th-9th 2004