Does anyone need to once again review the latest workplace violence statistics to understand that we’ve got a problem?
OK, here’s one: Nearly 2 million American workers fall victim to workplace violence each year, according to OSHA.
Here’s another: Close to 1,000 people have lost their lives in active-shooter or aggressor events inside schools, buildings, parks and other public areas over the past two decades.
Frightening, right? It’s why if you’re an employer, you really need to consider workplace violence insurance, which can help protect your business after someone attacks or even kills another person at your workplace.
Nurses, medical assistants, emergency responders and social workers face some of the greatest threats in our workplaces, suffering more than 70 percent of all assaults. Women workers are also at particular risk, suffering two out of every three serious workplace violence injuries.
The fact of the matter, however, is that the risk exists whether you run a bagel shop, a church, school, movie theater, whatever.
Your company is at an increased risk of workplace violence if it:
- Deals with members of the public;
- exchanges money;
- delivers goods and services;
- works with unstable or violent persons;
- operates late at night and,
- plans to reduce its workforce or outsource functions or operations.
The expenses that arise in the aftermath of a workplace violence incident can be staggering.
We’re talking about crisis management, security, employee counseling, public relations, salaries for victim employees and for replacement employees, medical care, rehabilitation for employees, and loss of business income, among others.
Any of the above can amount to tens of thousands of dollars in unexpected expenses.
Not only will a workplace violence insurance policy cover many of these costs, the more robust policies include risk management services so that your company can get training on how to improve hiring practices, hostility management training, and threat notification systems.
OSHA at the moment has no specific standards for workplace violence but has indicated that employers or employees who know of a violent person or act — or potential of such — have a duty to address it through administrative controls and training.
A workplace violence insurance policy can help a business owner at least partly meet that duty.
Final thought, as always: not all workplace violence policies are the same. Make sure to work with an experienced insurance advisor who understands your business to design the right policy for your needs.
Jeff Parent is an Insurance Advisor and Registered Professional Liability Underwriter at CCIG. Reach him at JeffP@thinkccig.com or at 720-330-7918.
CCIG’s Active Shooter Response Guide can help your organization prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident, including how to train employees to recognize behaviors that indicate the potential for violence, as well as response strategies for your organization. Fill out the form here and download a copy today.