239429 Poor Work Organization and Co-worker Workplace Violence

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Jane Lipscomb, PhD, RN , Work and Health Research Center, University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, MD
Matt London, MS , Health and Safety Department, NYS PEF, Albany, NY
Kathleen McPhaul, PhD, MPH, RN , Work and Health Research Center, University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, MD
Jonathan Rosen, MPH, CIH , Health and Safety Department, NYS PEF, Albany, NY
Matt Kozak , Health and Safety, CSEA, Albany, NY
Background/Objectives: Workplace bullying and other forms of coworker conflict (Type III Violence), a largely under-recognized problem in the U.S. poses significant personal and occupational health costs. Workers who are targets report significant impacts including lost time, physical and mental illnesses, separation from employment, as well as reduced productivity. Methods: This paper will present an overview of the problem from a mix-methods research project that included a cross sectional survey (n= 13,000) and a series of focus group from a large eastern state government workforce. Data associating work organization factors, such as low coworker support, poor supervision, short staffing, lack of systems to address co-worker conflicts, and conflict between coworkers, including management, will be presented. Results: Findings include that workplaces at high risk of other forms of violence are also at increased risk of coworker conflict. A comprehensive intervention to reduce violence which includes early intervention, conflict resolution training, complaint/ reporting systems, supervisor training, performance evaluation that include supervisory skills, and policy and procedure development, will be a focus of discussion. Conclusion: Type III violence has not until recently been the subject of inquiry in a large U.S. State government workforce. Our survey data demonstrate the contribution of poor work organization to this highly prevalent and costly problem.

Learning Areas:
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Occupational health and safety
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Learning Objective: To demonstrate the association between Type III violence and poor work organization and to describe strategies to reduce workplace conflict.

Keywords: Violence Prevention, Conflict Resolution

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the PI on this NIOSH funded R01.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.