Posts Tagged ‘education’
Tuesday, October 7th, 2014
Law Takes Aim at Workplace Bullying, Raises Questions
By Laura Hautaia, Los Angeles Daily Journal, Sept. 17, 2014
What counts as bullying in the workplace?
While the concept may be relatively new, managers will have to undergo training on preventing abusive conduct at work once a new law goes into effect in January. The training will come along with other required lessons on preventing sexual harassment and discrimination, but it’s different in one important way: bullying isn’t illegal in California. For now.
Attorneys say AB 2053, which Gov. Jerry Brown signed in August, might open the door to making abusive conduct illegal, opening a new category of liability for employers.
“There’s a feeling that there should be a way to prevent that kind of destructive behavior, because it does hurt people when it’s extreme enough, and it causes economic damage,” said Margaret H. Edwards, a shareholder at Littler Mendelson PC who has researched the advent of anti-bullying laws worldwide.
At the moment, the required training might still come into play in a court case if workers sue for harassment or intentional infliction of emotional damage in the workplace, attorneys said.
Whether or not employers provided adequate training on abusive conduct, said Chaya M. Mandelbaum, a partner at Rudy, Exelrod, Zieff & Lowe who represents workers, “could be a very relevant piece in looking at the culture of the workplace.” Edwards said the new requirement heralds wider recognition of bullying as a problem that can be addressed with laws. Indeed, other states are considering bills that address bullying in schools, and Tennessee passed a law encouraging public employers to create anti-bullying policies.
What’s more, she noted, laws have passed in Canada, the UK and Europe that address bullying in the workplace. “I think part of this is because of work that has been done that comes out of the harassment arena and a desire to try to address destructive behaviors in the workplace that don’t quite fall into the traditional harassment and discrimination categories,” Edwards said.
Some of that work has been done by Gary Namie, a Washington State social psychologist who advocates for anti-bullying legislation. He worked to get a more comprehensive law banning workplace bullying in California in 2003, but the law didn’t pass. Namie said his organization, the Workplace Bullying Institute, talked with California Assemblywoman Lorena Gomez as she authored AB 2053, but that the resulting bill was watered down from what he hopes to see eventually become the law.
“The law is a baby step toward recognizing the impact of workplace bullying defined as abusive conduct,” Namie said. Namie compares abusive conduct at work to domestic abuse. Rather than isolated incidents of cruelty, he said, bullying is a pattern that systematically beats down an employee.
Employment attorneys agreed with this description. “It’s vicious a lot of times,” said Kathryn B. Dickson. What’s more, she said, everyone at the workplace can suffer when bullying takes place. “It has impact on morale and productivity.” But Dickson also noted that while the law defines abusive conduct, naming it in the workplace might still be difficult.” “It gets very mushy around the edges,” she said. However, she compared the task of defining workplace bullying to the questions that surrounded the idea of sexual harassment when it was first litigated in courts. “People said how are we going to say what harassment is? That worked out.”
One test case emerged in 2006, when a judge in London ruled in favor of a former employee of DB Services (UK) Ltd., a UK subsidiary of Deutsche Bank, who said she was systematically bullied at work until she suffered two bouts of Major Depressive Disorder. In a detailed, 46-page decision, High Court Justice Robert M. Owen said the bullying was harassment under the country’s Protection from Harassment Act of 1997, and that the company should have done more to prevent it.
The plaintiff, Helen Green, said coworkers engaged in “petty” bullying conduct and went out of their way to exclude her from conversations, lunches, work-related email chains and more. Green even recounted that one coworker made a raspberry sound every time she took a step while walking across the office. “Many of the incidents that she describes would amount to no more than minor slights,” Owen wrote. “But it is their cumulative effect that has to be considered.” What’s more, the company was privy to information about Green’s mental health history and could have known she would be vulnerable to such bullying, he ruled.
Such situations aren’t uncommon in American workplaces, plaintiffs’ attorneys said. Mandelbaum said many people call seeking legal representation, only to learn what they experience at the hands of a coworker or supervisor is not illegal. What’s more, often it’s bullying that motivates someone to sue for sexual harassment or discrimination in the first place, he said. “It’s that kind of conduct that underlies their feelings and their motivation to go through what they need to go through to enforce their rights legally.” Mandelbaum said.
Tags: AB2053, abusive conduct, california, education, sexual harassment, supervisor training, workplace bullying law
Posted in Healthy Workplace Bill (U.S. campaign), Workplace Bullying Laws | 1 Archived Comment | Post A Comment (
Wednesday, October 1st, 2014
Workplace Bullying & Abusive Conduct:
The Other Harassment DVD
We know time is valuable. Educate all employees with this 20 min. training DVD. Distinguish abusive conduct from lesser forms of mistreatment that do not cause the same level of disruption in productivity.
This DVD video training is appropriate for non-supervisory employees or managers. Produced in August 2014.
It is the ideal video to accompany sexual harassment training. Can be streamed for online viewing by employees.
Complies with Section 12950.1, California Government Code required as of 1/1/2015
Twenty-seven percent of adult Americans report being bullied at work; an additional 21% witness it (an est. 65 million workers) and vicariously are made miserable (according to the scientific national 2014 WBI U.S. Workplace Bullying Survey). It’s time to examine the real costs for employees (health consequences) and for employers (unwanted turnover, absenteeism, lawsuit or complaint settlements, workers comp and disability claims).
Dr. Gary Namie, recognized as North America’s foremost authority on workplace bullying, personally introduces the topic, citing the latest prevalence statistics and the newest and most relevant research findings.
1. The Phenomenon
4. Who Gets Bullied
5. Health Impact
6. Impact on Organizations
7. What Employers Can Do
Tags: abusive conduct, California section 12950.1, compliance training, DVD, education, employer, Gary Namie, training, training DVD, Workplace Bullying Institute
Posted in Products & Services | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Tuesday, September 30th, 2014
Since 2008, Drs. Gary and Ruth Namie have been training professionals in all aspects of the phenomenon of workplace bullying. Their 3-day, intensive and immersive program is called Workplace Bullying University®. It was the first, and remains the only, program of its kind in North America.
The final 2014 session is held in Bellingham, Washington on November 7-8-9
Their research-driven/evidence-based approach covers:
– prevalence in society and among industries
– profiles of targeted individuals and perpetrators
– the range of tactics employed
– understanding coworkers
– origins of bullying — personalities, work environment, societal
– the science and impact of health harm — physical and psychological
– costs borne by employers
– individual solutions and shortcomings
– potential group solutions
– new roles and responsibilities for managers
– employer solutions — band aid to comprehensive approaches
– public policy change in the context of international laws
Participants receive a treasure trove of materials and resources to position themselves as experts in workplace bullying either for private use or to launch a successful organizational anti-bullying initiative for their employer or union.
See the Workplace Bullying University website for details, testimonials and discounted tuition.
Tags: education, Gary Namie, Ruth Namie, training for professionals, Workplace Bullying Institute, Workplace Bullying University
Posted in WBI Education, Workplace Bullying University | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Friday, April 18th, 2014
We announce the first-ever healing workshop for bullied targets and their loved ones.
The inaugural Workplace Bullying Retreat will be Saturday May 31 in Bellingham, WA. The one-day Retreat is facilitated by WBI founders, Drs. Ruth and Gary Namie. Attendees will understand the storm that ripped through their lives, its impact on their health, and solutions when employers do nothing to stop it.
“Bullying is perplexing, leaving targeted workers with lingering questions such as ‘Why me?’,” said Dr. Gary Namie. “The retreat is designed to answer those questions so the person can move on with her or his life after bullying.”
This new workshop differs from WBI’s other programs that emphasize education alone. The Retreat is designed to create a validating, encouraging, emotionally positive, healing, and supportive, safe harbor for attendees who have endured emotional abuse.
“No one else has talked with over 10,000 bullied targets like we have,” remarked Dr. Ruth Namie. “We’re proud to create this first-ever, in-person experience just for targets after 17 years of advocacy on behalf of targets.”
Family members are also encouraged to attend in order to learn how to best help their loved one move on toward an abuse-free working life.
The first three scheduled days in 2014 are May 31, July 19, August 23
Tags: bullied targets, education, Gary Namie, healing, retreat, Ruth Namie, workplace bullying, Workplace Bullying Institute
Posted in Hear Ye! Hear Ye! 2, Products & Services, WBI Education | 2 Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Thursday, February 6th, 2014
If professional training in Workplace Bullying is on your bucket list for 2014, you have one week to put down a deposit to hold your seat in any of four remaining Workplace Bullying University® sessions in April, June, August or November. Discount is $1,000; deposit is $600; tuition is $2,600. Offer expires Friday Feb. 14.
Designed for nurses, union officers, counselors, social workers, academics, physicians, researchers, psychotherapists, attorneys, trainers, individuals transitioning to new careers, HR, and new advocates.
Thursday, September 12th, 2013
It’s fall. The Workplace Bullying Institute announces the final 2013 sessions of its Workplace Bullying University®. University, begun in 2008, is the first and only research-driven training curriculum for professionals to develop a mastery in workplace bullying created by the Drs. Namie, Ruth & Gary.
Ideal for professionals in mental health, healthcare, law, unions and HR.
Nov 15-17 Bellingham, Washington
Tags: Bellingham, education, Gary Namie, Houston, mastery, training for professionals, workplace bullying research, Workplace Bullying University
Posted in Hear Ye! Hear Ye! 2, WBI Education, Workplace Bullying University | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Friday, September 17th, 2010
There are many myths and misconceptions about workplace bullying advanced by disbelievers and opponents. One portrayal is that bullying affects only the uneducated, unskilled workers.
The WBI 2003 online survey reported that the five top reasons individuals are targeted for bullying, in rank order, were: (1) refusal to be subservient (being independent), (2) being more technically skilled than the bully, (3) being liked by co-workers/customers (being the go-to expert), (4) being ethical and honest, and (5) not being sufficiently political. Thus, people are targeted for their strengths and the threats they pose to the defensive, narcissistic perpetrator.
In the scientific (nationally representative) 2010 WBI U.S. Workplace Bullying Survey, respondents could check whether they had a college degree (or beyond) or whether they did not have a degree. That allows us to determine if the reported experiences with bullying differed according to education level.
Tags: 2010 WBI U.S. Workplace Bullying Survey, education, workplace bullying, Workplace Bullying Institute
Posted in Bullying-Related Research, Tutorials About Bullying | 15 Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Thursday, March 25th, 2010
Guest essay by Matt Spencer, EdD, veteran school administrator and HR professional, connecting the dots between workplace bullying in the schools and its impact on students.
“The workplace bully in America’s schools is a taker…a robber…a thief. The bully steals the dignity, self-esteem, confidence, joy, happiness, and quality of life of the targeted victim. But when the target is a teacher, a great injustice occurs because the bully robs the students of what they want, need, and deserve…. A great tragedy occurs everyday in America’s schools as thousands of children are robbed by the workplace bully of the RIGHT to be nurtured and taught by such honorable, caring, outstanding educators.”
Tags: bullied teachers impact students, education, HR, Matt Spencer, stealing from children, teacher bullying, workplace bullying in schools
Posted in Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Fairness & Social Justice Denied | 8 Archived Comments | Post A Comment (