Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Proactive Preparedness Workplace violence can happen at any time, in any industry While every work site and situation is unique, there are general prevention and preparedness guidelines that can be customized to any environment Advance preparation and proactive awareness can help create a safe and caring work environment Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment What is Workplace Violence? Any action that could threaten the safety of an employee, impact an employee’s physical or psychological well-being, or cause damage to company property. Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Profile of an Active Shooter An individual engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined, populated area Active shooter situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly Because these situations are often over before police can arrive, individuals must be prepared Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment U.S. Statistics Average of 20 workers are murdered and 18,000 assaulted each week while at work Retail trade and service industries account for more than half of workplace homicides and 85% of non-fatal workplace assaults Information obtained through the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment U.S. Statistics (cont.) Estimated 16,400 threats are made, 723 workers are attacked and 43,800 workers are harassed Information obtained through a study conducted by the Workplace Violence Institute. Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Causes of Workplace Violence Threat of job loss or less hours Personal problems unrelated to work Job pressure Employment grievances Non-sensitive termination/rigid management styles Personality conflicts Negative performance appraisals Economic pressure/mounting bills Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Domestic Violence One of the most common causes of workplace violence is domestic violence that spills over into the workplace U.S. Department of Labor reports that the alleged assailant in about one in six homicides of women at work is a current/former husband or boyfriend Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Warning Signs Explosive outbursts Empathy with violent individuals Behavioral signals may include: - Direct or veiled threats of harm to self or others Numerous conflicts Intimidation/belligerence/ harassment/bullying Severe mood swings Depression or paranoia Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Warning Signs (cont.) Statements indicating desperation over family/financial/personal problems Drug/alcohol abuse Significant changes in someone's “normal” behavior or routines Noticeable decrease in attention to personal appearance Unexplained increase in absenteeism Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Response Process 1. Preliminary risk evaluation 2. Taking initial actions 3. Appropriate response measures Call police Evacuate or hide 4. Bringing the incident to conclusion 5. Following up/intervention 6. Consider measures to prevent similar incidents 7. Monitor for any new threats Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment If Workplace Violence Does Occur … Call 911 Project calmness Move/speak quietly, slowly, and with confidence Listen with empathy/Create dialogue Let them know you are interested and listening Focus your attention on them Keep your posture relaxed but attentive Position yourself at a right angle Establish ground rules Describe the consequences of violent behavior Be careful not to threaten! Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Conflict Resolution Techniques Ask for specific, small favors - Asking the person to move to a quiet area Use delay tactics - Name…can I get you a glass of water? Break problems into manageable units - Be reassuring and offer options Ask for recommendations; repeat back what is requested Position yourself so exits are not blocked Let someone else know what you are doing Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Do NOT: Use communication styles that generate hostility (apathy, coldness, giving the run around) Reject all of the person’s demands from the start Pose in challenging stances Engage in physical contact, finger pointing, staring Make sudden or threatening movements Threaten, challenge, belittle, or make them feel foolish Act impatient or criticize the person Attempt to bargain with a threatening person Make false statements or promises Invade the person’s personal space (3-4 ft. zone) Use profanity Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Preventing Workplace Violence Recognize the warning signs Understand why employees become upset Encourage employees to report suspicious behaviors/threats Practice conflict resolution techniques Lead by example – begins with management Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Preventing Workplace Violence While it is difficult to prevent incidents of workplace violence or any other unplanned event, it is important to work proactively to keep your workplace as safe as possible. ACTIVE SHOOTER How to Respond Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter An individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area, typically through the use of firearms. Victims are typically selected at random. Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter – How to Respond 1. Call 911 and Evacuate Have an escape route planed Silence your cell phone and/or pager 2. Hide (if you cannot evacuate) Leave belongings behind Hide in an area out of the shooter’s view Block hiding place entry & lock doors 3. If Approached Remain calm and follow instructions Keep hands visible at all times 4. Take Action As a last resort; when your life is in imminent danger Attempt to incapacitate the shooter Act with physical aggression - throw items at the shooter Call 911 Immediately!!! 5. When Officers Arrive Remain calm and follow instructions Put down any items in your hands Raise hands and spread fingers Keep hands visible at all times Avoid quick movements Avoid pointing, screaming or yelling Do not stop to ask officers for help or direction when evacuating 6. Important Information to Relay to Officers Location of the shooter Physical description of shooter Number of shooters Number of potential victims Number/type of weapons Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Coping Be aware of your environment and possible dangers Take note of the two nearest exits If in an office and not able to evacuate, stay there and secure the door Take the shooter down as a last resort Remember: - Such events are unpredictable and evolve quickly - Law enforcement is usually required to end an active shooter situation Call 911 when it is safe to do so Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Training Your Staff Emergency Action Plan (EAP) Reporting fire and other emergencies Evacuation policy/procedure Emergency escape procedures/assignments Contact information/responsibilities - EAP designates Local area hospital information Emergency notification system: - Individuals at remote locations Local law enforcement Local area hospitals Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Training Your Staff Training Exercises Conduct mock active shooter exercises Use advice of local law enforcement Recognize sounds of gunshots React quickly to gunshots - Evacuate the area - Hide - Act against shooter as last resort Call 911 Arrival of law enforcement Adopt the “survival” mindset during times of crises Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Training Your Staff Information for 911 Location of shooter Number of shooters Description of shooters Number/type of weapons Number of potential victims When Police Arrive Remain calm, follow instructions Keep hands visible Avoid making quick movements Do not stop officers, proceed in the direction from which the officers entered Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Prepare For & Prevent Ensure facility has at least two evacuation routes Post evacuation routes in conspicuous locations Include law enforcement and first responders Encourage law enforcement, emergency responders, SWAT teams, K-9 units, & bomb squads to train at your location Foster a respectful workplace Be aware of indications of workplace violence and take remedial actions accordingly Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Preparation & Management Utilize HR and facility departments Conduct employee screening/background checks Create system for reporting signs of violent behavior including threats from spouses/partners EAP to deal with active shooter and after action planning Institute access controls Distribute critical items: floor plans, keys, personnel lists/numbers Coordinate with security Assemble crisis kits: radios, floor plans, staff rooster, first aid kits and flashlights Removable floor plans near exits/entrances for responders Activate emergency notification situation Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Manager Reactions Employees will follow managers’ lead Managers must be familiar with EAP procedures Take immediate action Remain calm Lock and barricade doors Evacuate staff/visitors via planned route to safe area Ensure EAP has details for evacuating individuals with special needs Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Active Shooter - Managing the Consequences Account for all individuals at assembly point Determine method for notifying affected families, including any causalities Asses psychological state of individuals at the scene; refer to healthcare specialists Identify and file critical personnel or operational gaps as a result of the incident Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Lessons Learned Analyze and create an after action report Serve as documentation for response activities Identify successes/failures that occurred during the event Analyze effectiveness of the EAP Define plan for making improvements to the existing EAP Creating a Safe & Caring Work Environment Questions?