• Brief Advice: Keeping Bullying Out of the Workplace
  • April 30, 2008
  • Law Firm: Fowler White Boggs P.A. - Fort Myers Office
  • LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell posed the following question to provide a variety of views on this important topic:

     

    As more states initiate legislation against workplace bullying and other forms of harassment, what steps can companies take to ensure their policies are communicated to all workers? 

     

    Playground bullies don’t always outgrow their meanness when they graduate from elementary school. Many employees can share horror stories about co-workers and bosses who bullied and harassed colleagues on a regular basis. Such behavior is not only bad for employee morale; increasingly, states are considering legislation that would make it illegal. While no laws have been passed yet, employers need to be aware of pending legislation and what steps they can take now to ensure bullying will not be tolerated in the workplace.

     

    Response:

    As more information is conveyed electronically, make sure your harassment policies are made available on your intranet site in a conspicuous location, if you have an intranet. Email is another valuable tool to communicate harassment policies to all employees. It is also a good idea to post a hard copy in break rooms or other common areas.  Like the adage that says you can’t force a horse to drink, you probably can’t force an employee to actually read the policy. But the more times you take the horse to the water, the better!