How Long-Term Security Could Prevent Workplace Violence

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Prevention of Workplace Violence (OSHA, 2006):

•    Awareness/Training
•    Threat Assessment
•    Long-Term Security
•    Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
•    Employee Assistance Program

Long-Term Security

Aside from dealing with situations as they arise, the agencies are also required to continually assess situations that may lead to threats. There is a number of existing basic security measures that many USDA offices already implemented, sometimes in conjunction with neighboring Federal offices or the facility lessor. In addition, there are means to create physical barriers between the employee and the person posing hazard to him/her.

Administrative procedures are also available which can lessen the possibility for violence. The agency’s administrative management staff is responsible for putting implementing the said measures. The Department is able to provide agencies with detailed information to facilitate the process.

Special Measures for Employees Who Work in the Field. USDA has numerous employees sent to, literally, the field, the forest, and the city, to do their job sometimes alone. Like ordinary U.S. workers and citizens, USDA field employees are also exposed to risks of crime perpetrated against them while doing their job, whether the reason is job related or not. Some USDA employees receive threats in the midst of doing compliance inspections and even attacked while surveying forest tracts. Each agency is required to provide employees with specific safety guidelines suitable to situations they will likely encounter while doing their duties.

As a general rule, employees who work alone or far from the office must have a daily work plan and must inform a person of their locations throughout their tour of duty. When necessary and possible, management can impose a “buddy system” policy or provide for back-up, such as police assistance, so that workers need not cope with a probable dangerous situation oh his or her own.

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