Australian Institute of Criminology

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Bullying behaviour in workplace documented

Media Release

13 August 2000

Occupational violence is a problem with significant legal, economic and emotional consequences for employers and individual victims.

The Australian Institute of Criminology today released, Preventing Violence Within Organisations: A Practical Handbook by Claire Mayhew, designed as practical guidance to help employers stop inappropriate behaviour.

"The direction of violence can be from employer/supervisor to employee; employee to employee; or employee to apprentice", said Dr Adam Graycar, Director of the Australian Institute of Criminology.

The most effective prevention method is clear CEO commitment to zero-tolerance of violence" Dr Graycar said.

"Violence within organisations is committed by individuals who have, or have had, some form of an employment relationship with the organisation. The incident may involve a 'one-off' physical act of violence, or some form of bullying or harassment. Sometimes multiple perpetrators may be involved and more than one recipient, and the events may be repeated over time (eg initiation rituals)".

Preventing Violence Within Organisations: A Practical Handbook includes discussions on:

  • economic and personal impacts from violence
  • management styles that may encourage, or impede, violence within organisations,
  • an outline of risk identification, assessment, and control procedures to guide employers in prevention of violence within organisations
  • a series of detailed draft violence prevention policy and strategy documents and checklists which employers can adopt and adapt to specific on-site conditions