In all workplaces, there is a potential for violence. Whether it’s an angry customer, agitated patient or upset family member, there is a risk that violence could impact you on the job.
Workplace violence includes many kinds of situations ranging from physical assaults to verbal altercations. The impact of this violence may be physical or psychological in nature, but it leaves workers with difficult choices to make about seeking medical care, taking time away from work and healing.
It’s important to note that workers’ compensation can cover injuries and illnesses that result from violence in the workplace. If you are hurt at work, don’t be afraid to ask to seek medical care.
How many workers face violence on the job?
In 2018, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that 20,790 workers in the private industry suffered trauma related to violence in the workplace. The reported incidents all required at least a day away from work.
The victims of these violent acts are primarily in social assistance and health care industries. These two industries’ victims make up 73% of those who were injured. Of all victims, 71% were female, and 62% were between the ages of 25 and 54.
Workplace violence may also result in deaths. In the same 2018 study, the BLS found that 453 workers were killed on the job as a result of violence. In this case, 82% of the victims were men, while 47% were white. The age range was more varied, but still 66% were between the ages of 25 and 54.
Interestingly, those who were killed on the job were more likely to be in a protective service field or in sales.
What should you do if you’re a victim of workplace violence?
The first reaction to any violence in the workplace should be to get the authorities involved. Any physically violent outburst puts people’s lives at risk. If you’re hurt, go to the hospital and seek medical attention. Then, reach out to your employer to file for workers’ compensation, so that you can make a claim and get the compensation that you need to recover.