Do you know you spend almost 80 percent of your time at the workplace? It is one place you have to create long-lasting friendships and permanent enemies in equal measure.
Every workplace has policies that cushion its employees against any form of abuse. The most common types of abuse at the workplace are
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Modern slavery
The paperwork is a shield; all the protection and security is a personal responsibility of an employee.
In line with the government regulations and various workplace policies that govern workers, your safety at the workplace is paramount. Let’s look at how to prevent specific abuses and the best form of defense
Defense boundaries against physical abuse
Any form of external body harm to an employee is termed as physical abuse. There is no genuine reason for physical damage.
Physical abuse is cruel; no words can use to sugar coat it or rather have an excuse for such actions.
The first thing to do to prevent such occurrences is laying down control measureswithin the workplace that triggers physical abuse.
As an employer, look at some of the prompts to this, is it an employee going through an emotional problem and projects it through physical violence.
Before you dismiss such an employee, let him seek guidance through counseling sessions.
Moreover, the office environment should be able to minimize exposure to such physical acts. It can be
- Use of open office with keen attention to professional distance
- Incorporating shared offices rather than lonely offices
- Installation of physical barriers
- Mounting CCTV cameras for proper monitoring
The use of guns at the workplace is left to law enforcement agencies.
However, the high profile employees who include the directors and managers have permits to have them within their office if and only if they exercise best gun safety measures; otherwise, it’s a time bomb. The right way of doing this is by investing in the best gun safewithin the premises or an office for easy access in case one needs to use it as a self-defense tool. A gun safe is a must-have equipment at the workplace.
Defense boundaries against sexual abuse
Sexual abusers take time to learn the movements of their target even in the workplace. Sexual harassment policies are the first line of defense for such kind of abuse.
However, this is just a document; a lot needs to be done to ensure the employees’ complete safety enforces the actual acts.
The best measures include:
- Let the harasser know you have an idea of his intentions
- Use communication channels stated within the policy
- Seek legal redress when all the above proves futile
Defense boundaries against emotional abuse
Any action that creates tension, anxiety, the stress of depression is classified as emotional abuse.
The diversity in lifestyles and opinions is the leading cause of emotional abuse. What do you do when exposed to such acts?
Matters of emotions are very delicate and need to be handled with care. Employers should try their level best to avoid emotional disturbance since there is no manual in handling them.
It requires a case-to-care kind of approach. The only remedy for this is to seek internal or external counseling services. Psychologists are better equipped with the right skills to handle such situations.
Defense boundaries against racism
A multicultural workplace enjoys the benefits of diversity but fights racism scourge. American workplace contributes 70 percent of cases of racism.
Racists know when to hit, and in most cases, they are wise enough to work within the law.
The only savior as a victim is to arm yourself with the law in case things don’t work in your favor in seeking justice within the corridors of management. Other options include
- Avoid unnecessary conversations with racist colleagues
- Choose a neutral ground when handling work-related issues that need crucial decision making
- Lay down ground rules in situations the trigger racism
- Capacity-building among employees on the need to accommodate inclusivity
- Use team-building activities to foster unity among employees
Defense boundaries against organizational abuse
Slavery was a vice since colonial times. Despite the inroads in independence, different forms of slavery still exist in an intelligent way that you may fail to detect it.
As long as there is forceful use of labor and recruitment, then that is a modern-day slaver. What happens when you are the one given most of the tasks, yet other employees have all the time to sit and relax?
With the right information, it’s possible to differentiate slavery from sycophancy. Most employers use sycophancy to escalate their slavery acts
How can you identify modern slavery?
- Working away from your job description
- Long hours of working with no compensation
- Forced duties not in line with your skills
- Getting fewer favors compared to your colleagues yet genuinely you are more productive
- Low wages compared to the national if not international standards
What to do when you experience one or two of these signs in your area of work
- Equip yourself with the right knowledge on the topic
- Seek help from the relevant authorities within the organizations
- Engage anti-slavery organization for professional help
- Speak up and socialize with people to hold your hand in your quest to end this form of slavery
Evaluate the systems in your workplace. What do you like, and what is not right in your thought? Is it some form of abuse, or it’s a norm that you fail to identify?
Please note that most abusers at the workplace normalize the act to a point the victims tend to get used to it. There is nothing to get used to, its abuse, PERIOD, take action. If that will cost you the job, so be it. You will stay counted as a voice for the voiceless.