Workplace Violence

News & Analysis as of

The Terrifying Reason Why Today’s Harassment and Discrimination Training Isn’t Enough

Nobody wants to think of their workplace as unsafe. As an employer, you have a vested interest in keeping your employees (not to mention yourself) as well as your company safe. Harassment and discrimination training is...more

Judge the Fighting Judge - How Would You Rule?

On June 2, 2014, a fight broke out in the hallway of a Brevard Country, Florida courtroom. The fight was between an assistant public defender and the presiding Judge, Retired Army Reserve Colonel, John Murphy, who threatened...more

To the Woodshed: Self-Defense, Defense of Others and Retaliatory Discharge

The workplace can be very tumultuous. Employees working in close quarters inevitably have disagreements, and some employees prove themselves to be disagreeable troublemakers. Workplace bullying is considered by some to be...more

Threat, assault on supervisor were just cause for dismissal at isolated mine in NWT with “zero tolerance” violence policy

An employee at an isolated camp in the Northwest Territories who assaulted and threatened his supervisor was dismissed for just cause, an adjudicator has decided. The employee was an equipment operator at a mine site....more

Yelling At Employee And Throwing Book In Her Direction Not Sufficient To Support Hostile Work Environment Claim

In Brooks v. Grundmann, a federal court of appeals in the District of Columbia held that a manager’s conduct amounted to no more than “ordinary tribulations of the workplace” and was thus insufficient to support a minority...more

Can Any Sense Be Made of Senseless, Workplace Violence?

Sadly, the recent mass shooting by a disgruntled employee at a FedEx sorting facility in Georgia reminded the U.S. of the disturbing fact that the number of public shootings has been on the rise over the past several years....more

Tales From The Crypt - Rule No. 10 – There Is No “I(Ntegrity)” In Team - Part I

Ed. Note-today we begin a two-part series from the Two Tough Cookies about some of the toughest choices a compliance practitioner may face. As important as this message is for the compliance practitioner, I hope that this...more

Not Quite An Eye For An Eye – Judge Rules That Employee’s “Kick In The Butt” Excuses Co-Worker’s Punch In The Mouth

Does a “kick in the butt” excuse a punch in the mouth? That was the question facing the Court in the recent case of Li v Furguson, 2013 CanLII 91746 (Ont. Sm. Cl. Ct.). Peng Li and Winston Furguson worked in the...more

MOL Inspector’s “Unclear” Order Required School Board To Revise Its Workplace Violence Policy

A Ministry of Labour inspector has ordered an Ontario school board to revise its workplace violence policy, and the Ontario Labour Relations Board has suspended that Order, calling it “unclear”....more

Spotlight on Workplace Violence Prevention and Awareness in April

April 2014 marks the third annual Workplace Violence Awareness Month, an observance aimed at raising public awareness of one of the top four causes of workplace fatalities. In 2009, the Bureau of Justice Statistics...more

Company Director Fined $8,500 After Swearing At MOL Safety Inspector, Making Threatening Gestures And Telling Inspector To Leave...

Corporate directors can be charged by the Ontario Ministry of Labour and fined under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Threatening and swearing at a Ministry of Labour inspector certainly increases the odds of charges...more

Title IX: Responding To Sexual Harassment And Violence Incidents

Confronting these emotionally laden, incendiary events requires an even-handed and fearless approach - A senior administrator recently described the issues related to sexual misconduct as a dormant volcano that lies...more

Employment Law Blog: Students, Employees and Assaults: Parallels Between Academic and Employer Requirements

Is it simply “human nature”? University of Iowa President Sally Mason is under scrutiny for her comments regarding a recent sexual assault reported to the university. Mason’s remarks were interpreted by portions of the...more

New Jersey Legislators Reintroduce Bill Seeking To Prohibit Workplace Bullying

On December 16, 2013, the Senate introduced another bill (S3115), the “Healthy Workplace Act,” seeking to prevent workplace bullying, abuse, and harassment. The bill would prohibit any conduct in the workplace that a...more

Attack On Co-Worker Who Warned Of Unsafe Behaviour Gets Employee 4 Years In Prison

An employee who attacked a coworker who warned of safety issues, has been sent to prison for four years. CBC News reported that the employee was training a coworker on the use of heavy equipment, and that after the...more

Investigating Employee Complaints of Workplace Bullying

Workplace bullying is once again receiving significant media attention after a Miami Dolphins offensive lineman, Jonathan Martin, lodged allegations of bullying and harassment by fellow lineman Richie Incognito and other...more

Zombies, Ghouls, and Unpaid Wage Claims: The Top 5 HR Horrors This Season

As the group that shepherds employees from the application stage through the end of the employment relationship, human resources (HR) departments administer programs and policies that could greatly impact a company if a...more

Employment Law Reporter - October 2013: Workplace Violence Examined (Part 2)

Using the risk factors outlined in our September Employment Law Reporter, and with consideration to the various types of possible workplace violence and the nature of the employer’s business, employers should establish...more

Responsibility of an Employer to Act Upon Threats From or By an Employee

Connie N. Bertram, Co-Chair of the Government Contractor Compliance Group, was quoted in an article in the Washington Post discussing the Navy Yard shootings. Ms. Bertram reminded contractors of the obligation to notify the...more

OSHA Basics and Recent Trends in OSHA Enforcement Actions

THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETYAND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION (“the Administration”) enforces the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (“OSHA”). From the employer’s perspective, emphasis on workplace safety is important because it...more

Employment Law Reporter - September 2013: Workplace Violence Examined (Part I)

What can employers do to prevent workplace violence? Unfortunately, we have learned a lot about violence, but we can use that knowledge to our advantage. In order for an employer to implement preventative measures, it must...more

Workplace Violence: The Basics

Unfortunately, incidents of violence and aggression in the workplace are not uncommon. There are, however, tools an employer can utilize to ensure employees feel safe at work. What follows are a general set of guidelines...more

The Rutgers Basketball Scandal – Some Questions For The Compliance Practitioner To Ask

The seemingly continuous saga of the Rutgers Athletic Department and the attendant fallout from the Mike Rice scandal has reappeared in the news recently....more

Is Your Criminal Screening Process Compliant?

An employer’s reluctance in hiring an applicant with a criminal history is understandable and sensible. Employers have an obligation to ensure a safe workplace, can be fined for failing to enact safeguards against workplace...more

OSHA Tags In on Workplace Violence Issue, Takes it to the Court

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)is suing an employer for an employee's claims that she was subjected to workplace violence concerns in violation of Section 11(c) of the Occupational Safety and Health...more

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