Bullying Work Place Wednesdays

 

Bullying part 1 click here

Preventing Bullying

As we saw in last week’s work place Wednesday, the case for strict anti-bullying policies is compelling and the need to act is now.

Bullying should be acknowledged as unacceptable behavior in every work place and seriously addressed at all levels. Establishing proper systems for investigating, recording and dealing with conflict will boldly draw the lines. It’s imperative to investigate complaints quickly, while maintaining discretion, confidentiality and protecting the rights of all individuals involved.

Development of strong interpersonal skills at all levels, particularly; being assertive is fundamental to preventing bullying in a safe workplace.

What can you do if you’re being bullied?

If your workplace has a policy in place, follow it. Also keep a factual journal of events. That is, record the date, time, witnesses, what happened and the outcome. The number and frequency of events is necessary to establish a pattern of bullying. Also, keep copies of any letters, emails, or texts messages you receive from the bully. Try telling the bully that the behavior is unwelcome and unwanted. Do well to focusing on the problem and not the person, as well as possibly sticking to the issues and staying calm. It helps to present your concerns in a professional, and factual way.

However, you should walk away if the person makes threats, or puts you down. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to the person, write a letter, send it by mail and keep a copy of the letter. Whiles doing all these, stay connected with co-workers and resist the urge to retaliate

What are your legal rights?

If the bullying is focused on gender, ethnicity, disability, age, religion or marital status, you may be protected under the Alberta Human Rights Act. If the bully threatens or commits physical assault, call the police.

What if you witness workplace bullying?

Bullying affects everyone in the workplace, not just the target. Bullies thrive where co-workers think that bullying behaviour is none of their business .If you see bullying in progress, gather some coworkers and stand in plain view of the bully, the bully will be aware and the target will feel supported. Offering the target your support and encourage him to take action is very helpful. Workplace bullying is a menace that neither you nor your employer can afford to ignore. Take action: don’t allow a workplace bully to threaten your health, safety and career.

 

Adapted fromViolence in the Workplace Prevention Guide. CCOHS

Canadian Red Cross Useful information: Violence, Bullying and Abuse Prevention

 

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