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Topic: Workplace

violence against staff
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Violence against staff

Violence against staff

Violence towards employees is a growing problem in the workplace and you have a duty to safeguard their personal safety in this regard.

Violence at work

There are particular risks and hazards arising from violence to employees both from other members of staff or the public which, if left unmanaged, could cause injury and potentially put you on the wrong side of the law.  To ensure that this doesn’t happen you should complete a risk assessment for your specific activities, which identifies all “significant” hazards and appropriate “reasonable” ways of reducing risks to an acceptable level.

Managing the risks

To help you identify the hazards associated with workplace violence use our example Risk Assessment - Violence against Staff.  It covers the generic issues associated with incidents of this type which result in harassment (because of gender, race etc.), verbal abuse/threats and attempted or actual physical assault. The assessment provided is not exhaustive, but use it as a guide to help you complete an assessment for your own staff, which relates to the work they carry out. Further advice on risk assessments of this nature can be obtained from the HSE: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/violindx.htm.

You should ensure that your document only addresses “significant” hazards, i.e. any that could, and more importantly are likely to, cause an accident or injury.

Make your instructions clear

Always ensure any control measures you identify and follow are decided upon the principle of “so far as is reasonably practicable” and that you brief your final assessment out to your staff.

Note. To accompany such an assessment you should ensure that your company has a robust policy in place which sets out how you would deal with incidents of violence as a result of your employees’ activities.

 

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