Workplace violence has been making headlines lately. As an employer your responsibility for workplace safety covers more than just accidents on the job. We have prepared some tips to help prevent workplace violence, and help you respond should it ever effect your workplace.
Identifying potential sources of of workplace violence in advance.
- Keep an eye out for potential signs of animosity between employees
- Surveillance normally occurs before attacks are carried out, employees should be trained to identify possible threats
- People seen in the same location on multiple occasions
- People sitting in a parked car for an extended period of time
- People loitering at bus or train stops for a long time
- People taking videos, pictures or notes
- People who seem out of place or are nervous
- People turning away when observed
Addressing workplace security is a critical piece of preventing workplace violence, be prepared.
- Implement thorough background checks as a condition of employment
- Institute mandatory identity verification for all service personnel visiting site
- Non-employees should not have easy access to the workplace
- Employees should be restricted from areas of the office they do not have business
- Doors should always be secured and surveillance should be in place, this includes utility rooms or ‘back door’ entry points
- Incorporate the use of landscaping that limits vehicles from getting too close to the building, increase perimeter lighting
- Businesses should have a clear crisis management plan. Consider the most dangerous attack paths based upon trends and your building layout and create a plan around those
- Establish an onsite liaison who regularly communicates with local emergency providers to establish the best ways to notify and communicate if an attack should happen
How to survive a workplace violence situation or an active shooter.
- The Department of Homeland Security suggest staff and security be trained on the Run-Hide-Fight method
- RUN, if possible. The best way to stay safe is to get away from the shooter. Leave all belongings and get to safety outside of the building. Call for help only when you are safe. Be sure to describe the shooters physical description in detail along with their location and the type and amount of weapons they have
- HIDE, if you can not run away. Lock doors, turn off lights, close blinds, and silence electronic devices. Hide under or behind large objects like desk or filling cabinets. Do not hide in groups. If you can communicate with law enforcement through text or a sign in an exterior window
- FIGHT, when in immediate danger. Use chairs, scissors, fire extinguishers, pens or books to disarm or distract the shooter
- When law enforcement has arrived in your area, keep your hands up, empty and visible to officers. Follow instructions to evacuate
How to respond after an active shooter event.
- Revisit planning, how can you change your protocol to train for situations you were not prepared for
- Provide staff with time and help they need to heal from an incident
If you have any questions regarding active shooter preparedness, please feel free to contact your Titan representative.
For more information, we provide the below sources: