Examining Security Procedures in the Workplace

Posted January 8, 2016 by Mary McGinley

After the terror attack in San Bernardino at a social services facility last month, many companies are taking a good, hard look at their own security procedures when dealing with workplace violence.

Several companies concerned about the possibility of such an attack have asked the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department if they can use the department’s video, “Surviving an Active Shooter.” The production enacts various scenarios which include an office, a shopping mall and a school.

Another similar video created by Houston officials entitled, “Run. Hide. Fight,” has had tens of thousands of views since the 2012 mass shooting in a Colorado movie theater. The film also serves as a kind of mantra for people to repeat to themselves if they find themselves in such a situation – reminding themselves to hide if they can’t run, and fight if they can’t hide.

Deaths arising from workplace violence are both steadily on the rise and the leading cause of job fatalities in the U.S. according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. Most companies of any size find themselves ill-equipped to deal with a situation involving workplace violence. Many companies really have no policy in place when dealing with such a situation where a coworker or someone from outside the company has decided to deal with a grievance in a violent manner.

After the incident in San Bernardino, more and more companies realize they must do something and have been turning to security consulting firms and human resource management companies to help them put a plan in place. Management of medium and large companies are being trained in how to recognize worker behavior and to alert on-site security or other authorities in an effort to stop violent situation before it starts.

However, even with such training, that isn’t always a guarantee. The employees of the San Bernardino County Environmental Health Services division had received “active shooter” training, ironically, in the very same conference room where the shootings took place. Two survivors from the incident said that colleagues did react by trying to do as they were trained, dropping under tables and staying quiet to avoid attracting attention.

Does your company have an emergency plan in place? How well prepared are your employees when dealing with an emergency? At EinsteinHR, we can help you create and implement a written safety plan and help provide resource materials for that plan for your employees so that they are prepared in case of an emergency. Contact us today at 770-962-1700 to find out how we can help.