violence by TPenney


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    Home                        Workplace Violence 101
                                  Organizational Development
                       Threat Management Team                       Risk Analysis
How We Can
   Help         Taskforce responsible for security            A general assessment of
                assessment, policy and program                organizational
                development and threat response.              vulernabilities should be
                Members can consist of a variety of           conducted on a regular
 Domestic       professionals including Human                 basis. Components include:
  Violence      Resources, Legal Counsul, upper
   in the       Management, Security, EAP, front line   Incident Audit: Review
 Workplace      supervisors and employees and outside   records to determine
                community resources. Ideally, this groupfrequency and extent of
                                                        previous incidents
                will meet at least semi-annually to review
                                                        including Workers
                prior incidents and re-assess risk factors.
De-escalating                                           Compensation,
Hostile Clients The team may also seek input and advise Disciplinary records,
                from law enforcement, mental health,    OSHA reports, security
                victim advocacy agencies, legal and     reports and other pertinent
                security consultant professionals.      documents.
 Violence 101 A lead coordinator will ensure tasks and Procedural Assessment:
                responsibilities are delegated and      Review hi-rsik work
                completed. They also can act as the     procedures such as cash
                central contact and maintain records of handling, working alone,
                meetings, assessments, reports and      working at night, entry and
                investigation procedures. An emergency egress vulnerabilities;
   Contact      contact system should be established to employee ID protocol and
                ensure that members can be reached at   other issues.
919.274.5515    any time.
                                                        Facility Assessment:
    Email       Training is necessary to ensure         Review physical layout and
                knowledge and ability to assess threats security devices. Lighting,
                and expedite security implementation.   barriers, CCTV, entry
                                                        control and security
                                                        personnel are some
                                                        components of the
                                                        procedures of Crime
                                                        Prevention through

                                             Employee Survey:
                                             Confidential survey of
                                             employee concerns,
                                             unreported incidents and
                                             most importantly,
                                             assessment of what
                                             employees would do if
                                             confronted with an issue or
                  Policy                     Hiring and Termination
Personnel Policy must be comprehensive
to include various types of workplace        Hiring Practices:
threats including intimate relations,        Dependant on the position
clients and strangers along with co-         and responsibilities,
worker issues. A good policy provides        conduct a criminal
support and protections along with           background check, in-
prohibited actions and sanctions. Include    depth job references and
an anti-retaliation clause to encourage      civil court records.
reporting, prohibit weapons and clearly      Interview questions focus
states the mission to prevent violence in    on inter-personal
the workplace.                               relationship skills and
                                             conflict management.
Contact Peace at Work for support for
your policy.                                 Termination Protocol:
                                             Ensure Respect and
                                             Dignity in all procedures
                                             for individual terminations
                                             and group lay-offs. Protect
                                             access to facility and
                                             information systems.
                Training                           Report System

Regular and documented training should       Develop forms and chain
occur for all staff. Understanding of        or reporting so that
workplace violence principals,               warnings and threats are
organizational policies, identification of   quickly passed on to the
warning signs, proper response and de-       Threat Managment Team.
escalation of hostile behavior should be     Forms should be readily
provided to frontline staff while            available to all employees.
supervisors and managment can recieve        Forms and investigation
additional training on threat management     documents need to be
and security implementation. The Threat      carefully recorded and
Management Team should recieve               maintained. Employees
intensive training on risk analysis and      should have multiple
legal considerations. Case study review      options to report concerns.
will familiarize members with team           Training should include
members perspectives and values.             common obstacles to
                                             reporting concerns such as
                                             fear of retaliation and
                                             creating problems for
                                             fellow co-workers.

                                             A database of reports
                                             should be kept to easily
                                             generate regular eports
                                             indicating hi-risk areas and
                        Threat Assessment*
   This refers to a threat assessment of a specific threat or issue, not
                about general workplace vulnerabilities.
       Threat Assessment Team                     Previous History

It may be the team coordinator who first   Investigate the subject's
gathers the facts and determines if the    previous criminal
whole team needs to be notified and        background with particular
convened.                                  relevance to violent or
                                           inter-personal crimes. The
Gather together a knowledgeable and        local courthouse can
capable team to determine the severity of provide records for that
the threat. If the threat warrants, do not district but services are
schedule a meeting; get together now via available for statewide and
phone if necessary.                        national data. Note,
                                           however, these background
Contact local law enforcement. Consider checks often do not
other community resources such as          indicate if a person has
mental health, victim advocates and        been previously charged
security consultants.                      but was not convicted of
                                           the crime.

                                             Determine if there were
                                             any protection or
                                             restraining orders placed
                                             against the individual.
                                             Also, determine if the
                                            person has a concealed
                                            weapons permit.
            Current situation                   Investigate Report

Consider how a mental health evaluation     Determine the incident or
can be conducted. Employees may be          issue that first raised the
refered to an Employee Assistance           concern. What happened
Program and then possibly for a             to cause the investigation?
psychiatric evaluation led by a             Obtain reports from as
professional with experience in violence    many witnesses as
assessment.                                 possible. Collect evidence
                                            such as threatening
Consider the level of stability in their    messages or damaged
lives: Are they going through a divorce or property.
seperation; personal bankrupcy; mental
health or substance abuse issues and/or     The incident is the cause of
other life changes. Are they at the end of the investigation and is the
their rope?                                 reason for any disciplinary
                                            action. However, the goal
Violent incidents often occur around        of the investigation is to
significant dates: before or after court    determine the potential
trials with issues such such as restraining threat. The incident or
orders, custody hearings, divorce,          precipitating action may be
grievance hearings and workers              minor but reveal a serious
compensation claims.Also consider the       threat. Conversely, a
anniversaries of certain events such as     serious trangression, such
losing a job or marriages.                  as bringing a gun to work,
                                            may have a low level of
While there are cases of assailants coming actual threat.
back years later, most incidents occur
soon after a negative job action or after a Of particular importance is
victim leaves an abuser.                    if they had made a threat.
                                            Often, veiled or even
                                            ambiguous threats are
                                            made to potenial targets.
                                            However, more direct
                                            statements are made to co-
                                            workers, friends and
                                            aquaintences. Any
                                            reference to a clear,
                                            detailed, laid-out plan is a
                                            serious red flag.
          Consider the person                   Constantly Assess

While there is controvesy over the value    Once a threat has been
of "a profile", there are some                 identified, it is never
characteristics that may warrant concern.      completely anulled.
No particuliar characteristic is definitive    Through out the
sign of danger; they are only factors in the   investigation, the risk and
bigger picture. However, certain               vulnerabilities must be
personality traits have been noted in          constantly assessed to
previous incidents.                            maintain safety.

Someone who blames everyone else. It is A suspect's situation may
never their fault; they place responsibility change quickly and often,
for their situation on others, often bitterly. requiring the consistant and
                                               dedicated attention from
Facination with weapons and violence.          those responsible for
As the majority of violent incidents           security.
involved firearms, a suspect's familiarity
and possession of one is key indicator.        Once a specific threat has
                                               been resolved, it would be
In domestic violence cases, abusers who wise to periodically review
demonstrate a deep sense of ownership of the suspect to determine if
the victim are particuliarly dangerous.        new concerns warrant
Frequent law enforcement contact,              further investigation.
injuring or killing the victim's pets and
kidnapping incidents are common pre-
indicators to homicide.
                         Security Measures*
        Develop a response plan                     Assess the work
The most crucial aspect of a security plan
is to detail what should be done if the    Initially, a general
perpetrator comes to the workplace.        assessment of the
Be able to spot the suspect. A description vulnerabilities can be
of them and their vehicle (or preferably a made. This would not only
picture) can be distributed to those       help address the immediate
responsible for being on watch. Security threat but improve the
devices such as discreet warning buzzers general safety of the
and alarms can be invaluable in these      workplace from all forms
situations and follow a pre-determined     of threats.
plan which may include
                                           This is also known as
      Calling law enforcement             Crime Prevention Through
      Notifying security, if available    Environmental Design or
      Locking all entrances to the        CPTED.
      Warning any identified targets      Aspects such as lighting
   Allowing passage on a pre-            surrounding the facility and
    determined escape route or to a       in the parking lot,
    safe location.                        accessibility to the
                                          buildings, bushes and trees
                                          around entrances that can
                                          hide an offender and the
                                          use of surveillance
                                          equipment are all items to
                                          be considered.

                                          Limit entry to facility,
                                          reduce accessibility and
                                          assess condition of locks,
                                          doors and windows.
                                          Provided that easy egress is
                                          maintained at all portals,
                                          the only entry would be at
                                          one door and only by
                                          screened visitors or

                                          Law enforcement can be
                                          indispensable in this step.
                                          Request for increased
                                          patrols, especially at shift
                                          change and other identified
                                          key times.
         Legal measures                       Protecting Targets

   Consult with your legal counsel.            Screen and/or
   Consider obtaining a workplace               change the target's
    restraining order, if available in           phone extension
    your state. If there is domestic             and emails.
    violence restraining order, request          However, it is
    a copy which lists the workplace             important to keep
    as a restricted area.                        the previous
                                                 extension in order
   Obtain a trespass order against the          to save any
    individual from coming onto the              threatening
    property.                                    messages for future
                                                 court evidence.
   Criminal charges: While states
    may vary in titles and details,             Change the location
    most have criminal charges that              of the target’s
    may be utilized:                             workplace to a safer
o   Harassment                  spot, away from
o   Communicating threats       entrances and
o   Damage to property          windows. However,
o   Assault                     they should not be

                               Offer the target the
                                chance to relocate
                                to another division
                                or plant with in or
                                possibly out of

                               Modify the target’s
                                schedule and work
                                assignments to help
                                elude the suspect
                                and/or offer a safer

                               Offer the target's a
                                parking spot to a
                                more secure
                                location or at least
                                one that is closer to
                                an entrance. Also
                                provide security
                                escort to and from
                                their car.
                               In situations of
                                extreme danger,
                                protect the target
                                and the workplace
                                by providing leave
                                for period of time.
                                Leave options can
                                be considered and a
                                truly supportive
                                management would
                                provide the means
                                to temporarily hide
                                out, i.e. a providing
                                a hotel room in
                                another location.
                   Most Effective Protection Measures

                 Hire off-duty law enforcement for security
         Hire a security firm for professional assessment and security
          If the facility and business permits, keep the doors locked
                 constantly, opened only to authorized personnel.

 The time length for these measures depends on investigation results.
      * Please note that these points are meant to provide ideas and
    suggestions as to how to assess and respond to a potential threat.
      Every situation is unique and requires a immediate, in-depth
investigation and proper utilization of resources to determine the safest
 response. Get the right people on the job and give them the resources
            and authority to effectively address the situation.

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