Train Your Workers to Prevent Workplace Violence

All your employees should be trained so that they are aware of the potential security hazards at your facility and the means to protect themselves and coworkers. The training should include your workplace violence and prevention program and the procedures and practices to follow in the event of a violent incident.

Safety training session

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Today we will take a look at the training California is requiring to prevent workplace violence in healthcare facilities. We are sure that any environment, health, and safety (EHS) manager can develop similar procedures to round out safety training programs.

What’s the “Type”?

California has identified four types of workplace violence. Your workplace violence training program should address each type:

  • Type 1 violence refers to violence committed by someone who has no legitimate business at the worksite.
  • Type 2 violence refers to violence toward employees by someone such as customers, clients, patients, or visitors who are legitimately at the worksite.
  • Type 3 violence refers to violence against an employee by a present or former employee.
  • Type 4 violence refers to violence by someone who does not work there, but has or had a personal relationship with an employee.

Eight Components for Initial Training

Your workplace violence training program should include initial training, annual refresher training, and training for specific reasons.

Your initial workplace violence training should be composed of at least these 8 components:

  1. An explanation of your workplace violence prevention plan, including hazard identification and evaluation procedures, general and personal safety measures you have already implemented, how the employee may communicate concerns about workplace violence without fear of reprisal, how you will address workplace violence incidents, and how the employee can participate in reviewing and revising the Plan.
  2. How to recognize the potential for violence, including factors that contribute to the escalation of violence and how to counteract them and when and how to seek assistance to prevent or respond to violence.
  3. Strategies to avoid physical harm.
  4. How to recognize alerts, alarms, or other warnings about emergency conditions such as mass casualty threats and how to use identified escape routes or locations for sheltering, as applicable.
  5. The role of private security personnel you may employ.
  6. How to report violent incidents to law enforcement.
  7. Any resources available to employees for coping with incidents of violence, including, but not limited to, critical incident stress debriefing or employee assistance programs.
  8. An opportunity for interactive questions and answers about your workplace violence prevention plan.

Additional Training

Your workplace violence training program should include additional training when new equipment or work practices are introduced at your facility or when a new or previously unrecognized workplace violence hazard has been identified.

Annual refresher training should be provided for employees whose job responsibilities, such as responding to alarms, may put them in the position of being confronted by violence.

Check tomorrow’s Advisor for some tips you can offer your workers to avoid or de-escalate workplace violence incidents.