November 30th, 2012

Let’s Talk with Kalola: Citizen Activist

Let’s Talk with Kalola, where targets can share their experiences with WBI’s blog readers. Here we go!

Dear Kalola,

I have been bullied since 2004.   We have policies and procedures, but some management encourages the mobbing and bullying, and others turn their heads the other way.


In 2004, due to my union rights, due to lay offs, I bumped someone from their job.  This person did not lose a job, this person also got to bump into another position.  It turned out that no one lost their job, but the group of coworkers have never gotten over losing that one coworker from their department.  I cannot even begin to describe the hate, isolation, rumors, etc., that have escalated since 2004.

The first couple of years, I really thought that if I worked hard and smiled, did everything I was told and had a positive attitude, this group of coworkers would get over it. They never have. I have tried to find another job for a couple of years as far as approx. 100 miles away, and so far no luck.

One of the persons who work where I do, does not believe in bullying and has spoken out many times. The place of business, has sent her to bullying school so she could teach us all about bullying and what it does to a person. Little did she know that the other person who trained with her was one of the biggest bullies at this place of work. She plays the two-headed snake role. This class did nothing more than make this business look as if it did care about its employees, but in fact, the bullies are promoted.  The employees who are bullied, no longer speak out, because they are just treated as if they are the problem.

The problem I have is, we have no one in our union or state government who will help pass an anti-bullying workplace law in my state. Once a week, I take a day of vacation, and travel approximately 100 miles away where I stand outside a college in a free speech zone.  I try to get signatures in hopes of turning the names over to our state legislature, in hopes that someone will help with the silent problem. The Governor is having an Anti-Bullying Seminar on Nov. 27, I paid the $40 to attend the seminar, but I was told that I will not be allowed to ask for signatures. The seminar is just for anti bullying for schools.

I would love to sign up to help, but I am the most unpopular employee in my job, and my employers spend a lot of time trying to get me out the door. I need my insurance and other benefits that I have worked so hard for, but I also spend a lot of time looking for other work and hope of finding it before they find some reason to get me out the door.

Is there any anti-bullying adult groups in my state that could help me get more signatures, or possible just help be of support.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks you for your time.


Dear Marlene,

It is difficult to understand that after eight years that your co-workers would still hold a grudge against you.  If any one of those workers had been in your shoes, they would have done exactly what you did, that is, bump another worker to keep a job.  No one enjoys having to displace a worker.

Let’s be clear you have done nothing wrong.  Unfortunate circumstances put you in the position of having to displace another worker.  You were professional in your dealings with your co-workers.  You did your best to maintain a positive attitude, and you have worked hard.  Had you not been carrying your fair share of the work load you would not have managed to stay employed as long as you have under very difficult working conditions.

You are a  remarkable person that cares deeply about the problem of bullying in the workplace.  You have experienced it, and you don’t want anyone else to go through what you have gone through.  Yes, there should be a law.

I have forwarded your name and contact information to WBI headquarters, and have asked them to forward your name to the volunteer coordinator for the Healthy Workplace Bill campaign in your state.  Thank you very much for your interest in educating others about this terrible workplace phenomenon.

Please read the book, “The Bully at Work” by Drs.Gary and Ruth Namie.  Learn all that you can about this terrible workplace phenomenon so that you can educate others.  Read the research that is posted on the website, watch the videos, listen to the podcasts, etc. that are available on the website.  There is a wealth of information that can be found on the website, with new material being added.

If you want to learn more about this terrible workplace phenomenon, the anti-bullying Workplace Bullying Institute offers an intensive training program through their Workplace Bullying University.

We need more people like you.  Thank you for your efforts, and thank you so much for caring about workers.  There are anti-bullying Healthy Workplace Bill campaign volunteers throughout the U.S. who give their time so unselfishly because like Marlee they care so much.  As Dr. Ruth Namie says, “Work shouldn’t hurt.”




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This entry was posted on Friday, November 30th, 2012 at 10:32 am and is filed under Let's Talk with Kalola. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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