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Work related violence

HSE published the latest report (for 2005/06 and 2006/07) on work-related violence from the British Crime Survey (BCS) on Thursday 8 May 2008. It provides an overview on the extent of violence at work in England and Wales and examines the nature of these incidents. It also looks at the level of worry among workers about becoming victims of workplace violence.

The report can be assessed via the Violence at work statistic page

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) defines work-related violence as:

Any incident in which a person is abused, threatened or assaulted in circumstances relating to their work

This can include verbal abuse or threats as well as physical attacks.

These pages explain what HSE is doing to address the issue of work related violence and provide access to a range of information.

Physical attacks are obviously dangerous, but serious or persistent verbal abuse can be a significant problem too, as it can cause damage employees’ health through anxiety and stress. For their employers this can represent a real financial cost – through low staff morale and high staff turnover. This in turn can affect the confidence of a business and its profitability. Further costs may arise from expensive insurance premiums and compensation payments.

All work-related violence, both verbal and physical, has serious consequences for employees and for the business they work for. For employees violence can cause pain, distress and even disability or death.