What do I do if an employee makes a threat to me and/or to anyone else?

The County does not tolerate violence in the workplace. Refer to the County’s Violence in the Workplace Policy found on the County Intranet.

The safety and security of employees are of the highest priority to the organization. Threats of violence, threatening behavior, or acts of violence against employees, visitors, customers, vendors conducting business with the County, persons appearing on County-owned property seeking information or assistance from the County, or any person utilizing County facilities for public meetings will not be tolerated. The County is also committed to providing a workplace in which the perpetration of domestic violence is neither tolerated nor excused, as well as providing resources and support for employees and managers to address the occurrence and effects of domestic violence in the workplace.

Examples of violence may include but not limited to:

  • Initiating physical combat or fighting through actions such as grabbing, pinching, or impeding, blocking or obstructing of movements, striking, punching, slapping, kicking, pushing, or any other threatening physical actions;
  • Other acts by or against employees including stalking, challenging another person to physical combat or fight, or any other action or conduct that implies the threat of harm;
  • Threatening communication, including mail, e-mail, telephone calls, faxes, gestures, drawings, writings, or verbal remarks.

All employees are responsible for maintaining a safe work environment.

Employees who make threats, exhibit threatening behavior, engage in violent acts against the life, health, well-being, family, or property of others while at work or at employer-sponsored events may be removed from the premises, may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination, and may be subject to criminal penalties, or all of these actions.

The act or threat may, in and of itself, constitute grounds for dismissal regardless of whether or not the perpetrator intended to carry out the threat.

Workplace violence is a serious issue; therefore, joking about violence or making false reports and unsubstantiated allegations about violence in the workplace will not be tolerated and will be treated as a violation of the County’s policy. In addition, retaliation by employees against other employees who report violations of this County policy will not be tolerated. Employees who engage in such retaliation will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.

IMMINENT DANGER – This can be defined as immediate concerns about the safety of yourself and others.

Escape

  1. Alert others
  2. Dial 9-911 (outside line)
  3. Notify Supervisor, Division or Department Director
  4. Call Countywide Security, ext. 4400 (phone number 363-4400)
  5. Contact Employee Relations

NON-EMERGENCY

  • Notify Supervisor, Division or Department Director
  • Contact Countywide Security ext. 4400 (phone number 363-4400)
  • Contact Employee Relations

Employee Relations will coordinate with the Division/Department Director to convene the Workplace Violence Advisory Team as appropriate to plan the investigation. The Advisory Team consists of Department representatives, Sheriff’s Office Countywide Security, Behavioral Health & Recovery Services, HR/Employee Relations, County Counsel, and the District Attorney’s Office in cases of domestic violence. If local law enforcement is conducting a criminal investigation, consultation will be made through the Sheriff’s Office on how to proceed with the administrative investigation. If there is a need to obtain a temporary restraining order against the perpetrator, that will be handled by County Counsel and the Sheriff’s Office will coordinate delivery.

Preventive measures include:

  • Communicating the County’s Workplace Violence Prevention Policy & Procedures to all employees.
  • Providing periodic training on the County’s Workplace Violence Prevention Policy & Procedures to all employees.
  • Posting emergency phone numbers on all County Telephones
  • Conducting periodic security checks conducted by Countywide Security

Each employee has a responsibility to treat all employees and others with whom he/she has employment contact respectfully. Further, employees are prohibited from threatening violence or taking violent action as outlined in the policy. It is the responsibility of any employee who feels that he/she has been the target of actual or threatened violence in the workplace or who has observed or otherwise learned of such conduct to immediately contact his/her supervisor, Human Resources, or Countywide Security. In cases where there is an imminent potential for violence, security or the local law enforcement agency should be contacted immediately. Survivors of domestic violence should talk with a trusted coworker, supervisor, union representative, or manager about the situation, strongly encouraged to contact the County’s Employee Assistance Program (Concern: EAP) at 1-800-344-4222 for other resources and advise the supervisor or manager if there is any concern about safety at work.

Report of Incident or Unsafe Condition

Download from the HR website at
http://hr.smcgov.org/documents/incident-report-unsafe-condition-form

Sample Incident Form