Guide to Violence Prevention in the Work Place
Examples of Work Place Violence Controls
The following practical suggestions are from the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) internet website titled "Violence in the Workplace".
Workplace design includes factors such as workplace lay-out, use of signs, locks or physical barriers, lighting, and electronic surveillance. Building security is one example where workplace design issues are very important. For example, you should consider:
- Positioning the reception area or sales or service counter so that it is visible to fellow employees or members of the public passing by.
- Positioning office furniture so that the employee is closer to a door or exit than the client and so that the employee cannot be cornered.
- Installing physical barriers, e.g. pass-through windows or bullet-proof enclosures.
- Minimizing the number of entrances to your workplace.
- Using coded cards or keys to control access to the building or certain areas within the building.
- Using adequate exterior lighting around the workplace and near entrances.
- Strategically placing fences to control access to the workplace.
Administrative practices are decisions you make about how you do business. For example, certain administrative practices can reduce the risks involved in handling cash. You should consider:
- Keeping cash register funds to a minimum.
- Using electronic payment systems to reduce the amount of cash available.
- Varying the time of day that you empty or reduce funds in the cash register.
- Installing and using a locked drop safe.
- Arranging for regular cash collection by a licensed security firm.
Work practices include all the things you do while you are doing the job. People who work away from a traditional office setting can adopt many different work practices that will reduce their risk. For example:
- Prepare a daily work plan, so that you and others know where and when you are expected somewhere.
- Identify a designated contact at the office and a back-up.
- Keep your designated contact informed of your location and consistently adhere to the call-in schedule.
- Check the credentials of clients.
- Use the "buddy system", especially when you feel your personal safety may be threatened.
- Do not enter any situation or location where you feel threatened or unsafe.