Today there are various hazards putting “human services professionals” at more risk than ever before. Most of these professionals are becoming victims of abuse and violence. The problem of violent behaviors is a major issue affecting different institutions today. The American Psychological Association (APA) designed a task force to train individuals to deal with violent behaviors in the workplace. More professional workers and employees are becoming victims of abuse and violent behavior (James, 2007). This discussion examines the precipitating factors behind violent behaviors and institutional culpability. The discussion also describes Fred Piercy’s “nine-stage model for intervention”.
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The Precipitating Factors
A precipitating factions any element contributing to the development of a condition, disorder, or bad behavior. Such factors are catalysts to specific conditions and behaviors in the workplace. Many healthcare professionals and employees are presently facing the risk of becoming victims of abuse and oppression. There are certain factors associated with such behaviors in workplace environments. The current situation indicates there are numerous factors that contribute to violent behavior in the workplace. To begin with, many institutions today fail to provide adequate training and skills to their employees. As well, leaders and managers lack relevant incentives that can help recognize early symptoms of abuse and violence (Allen & Sheen, 2005). This explains why organizational leaders are unable to appropriate precautions.
Some institutions fail to implement effective policies against such behaviors. This exposes the employees and caregivers to violent behaviors and abuse. It is also notable that nurses and caregivers tend to dress in uniforms. This makes it easier for attackers to identify and treat them negatively. As well, different people will encounter various stressors in their lives. Women are more likely to become victims of violence in the workplace. Caregivers also encounter abusive, demonstrative, and sometimes arrogant patients and workmates. This exposes them to violent behaviors. The security measures implemented in various organizations are inadequate thus encouraging such behaviors.
Most of the violent behaviors are observed today because different institutions and organizations do not provide the best precautions and safety measures. To begin with, institutions are to blame for such violent behaviors. The leaders fail to train and supervise their employees. With poor hiring strategies and lack of training, most of the employees become ignorant or violent. “Most of the institutions today fail to implement the best support systems for their employees (Cavaiola & Colford, 2010)”. This explains why violent behaviors and cases of abuse are rampant today. Many organizations today lack safe measures and strategies to deal with any unacceptable or abusive behaviors.
Organizations and health care institutions are to blame because they have poor policies against abuse or violence. The institutions fail to take action against employees who commit violence. The institutions have also failed to implement the best strategies to resolve difficulties encountered at the workplace. Some leaders use authoritarian leadership styles thus discouraging employee participation (Cavaiola & Colford, 2010). That being the case, it is evident that institutions are culpable and responsible for such violent behaviors.
Staff Culpability and Legal Liability
Many caregivers and professionals are also to blame because they have created conducive environments for violent behaviors. To begin with, most of the professionals who encounter certain violent behavior do not report to their managers. “This encourages such behaviors until they are out of control (Cavaiola & Colford, 2010)”. Some members of staff abuse drugs or suffer from serious conditions. These issues encourage violent acts against each other and eventually result in abuse. Some members of staff decide to solve their problems using their own knowledge. Any slight misunderstanding will eventually result in violence. This explains why such hazards have increased in the workplace today.
The other important thing to consider is that institutions and individuals are accountable for their actions. In law, “institutions or individuals are liable if they are responsible for any action or offense (Cavaiola & Colford, 2010)”. The concept of legal liability reflects the idea that individuals should be accountable for their actions. Behavioral emergencies have become rampant in many organizations (James, 2007). As a result, most of the employees providing human services are affected the most. This has called for legal actions to reduce such behaviors. This explains why individuals are accountable for their actions. The idea of legal liability can reduce most of these behaviors and abuses in the workplace.
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Nine-Stage Model of Intervention
Leaders should embrace the power of intervention in order to deal with disagreements and violence in the workplace. The first thing to consider is how to prevent the problem from escalating. The next thing is to intervene in order to reduce the “symptoms”. Intervention is necessary because it maintains the safety of employees, clients, and members of staff. In order to have a successful intervention, it is necessary to consider the nine-stage model as presented by Fred Piercy. The first thing is education. This is followed by “avoidance of disagreements or conflict” (James, 2007). The third and fourth stages are appeasement and deflection. The fifth and sixth stages are “time-out” and “show of force”. The other stages are seclusion, restraints, and sedation (James, 2007). The best way to make the intervention successful is to treat every individual with dignity and respect.
Allen, M. & Sheen, D. (2005). School-based Crisis Interventions: Preparing all Personnel to Assist. New York: Guilford Press.
Cavaiola, A. & Colford, J. (2010). Cases in Crisis Intervention. New York: Wiley.
James, R. (2007). Crisis Intervention Strategies. Belmont: Thomson Learning.