The risks of workplace violence

By Glenn French and Paul Morgan
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 03/15/2001

Too many Canadians believe that violence in the workplace is not a major issue in our society. However, many surveys have found that violence — both physical and psychological — is present in many workplaces. And sexual harassment has been the largest growing area of human rights complaints in Ontario over the past two decades.

Preventing and managing workplace violence is a joint responsibility of management and workers. Many collective agreements have incorporated clauses with this purpose in recent years. In addition, legal safeguards need to be strengthened.

Another route to improving this situation is for workplaces to develop and implement appropriate programs to prevent workplace aggression. Components of such programs include: