My ex-boss was a rainmaker and it wasn’t long before I understood why I was one of a quickly growing list of people to have had that job. I soon found myself undergoing a heart cath procedure because I’d failed multiple tests. It turned out I was actually suffering the side effects of stress and the diagnosis was that I needed to quit my job. I decided to try reasoning with upper management one more time. All I wanted was a transfer back to my old position. I will never forget that day. He readily admitted that I was being horribly abused but then he brought down the hammer. If I thought I had some kind of grounds – I should sue because if I didn’t continue on in that position I was fired. I walked away from that experience keenly aware that fear of litigation on their part may well have protected me.
I’m a filmmaker so I started making short documentaries about victim/targets of workplace bullying. Each video highlighted the impact not just on the target but often for the family. My films allowed me to speak with experts, researchers, legislators, advocates, victims/targets, alleged bullies, business & HR reps, journalists and many others both here in the U.S. and abroad. At the time few people even knew what the term workplace bullying meant. It wasn’t until I made What Killed Kevin (reviewed in the Huffington Post), for which I interviewed the alleged bully boss, that I was able to recognize how subjective and tragic many of these situations can be for everyone involved.
Awareness of this issue is now at an all time high and thanks to the recent NFL scandal the message is finally loud and clear; the focus needs to be on cleaning up the work culture itself. More employers need to follow this example and step into their pivotal role to create and foster respectful work environments whether there is legislation or not. But, how do we make that happen?
Recently I joined several others well-versed in this topic to found the National Workplace Bullying Coalition (NWBC): “Through education and mobilization we envision a future where workers are assured their right to dignity at work, where workplace bullying is an unlawful act and where employers have taken effective steps to prevent, detect and remedy acts of workplace bullying.”
In a few weeks we’re taking what we believe is a huge step forward. April 4, NJ State Senator Linda Greenstein will headline “WORKPLACE BULLYING: SEEKING SOLUTIONS,” a half-day convention at Rutgers School of Law-Newark. The event brings together legal experts for both business interests and employees, labor leaders, business consultants and others deeply committed to preventing this type of abuse in order to talk frankly and share best practices. New Jersey is just the beginning.
Reblogged this on JerBear's Queer World News, Views & More From The City Different – Santa Fe, NM and commented:
More on workplace bullying – from New Jersey…
I’m looking for legal help in Salem Ma. I’ve been bullied long enough.
Hi, You need to reach out in person to a lawyer who litigates on behalf of employees and understands the complicated regulations and legislation in your state. Two good places to look are https://www.nela.org/NELA/ http://www.americanbar.org/groups/bar_services/resources/state_local_bar_associations.html Here’s an excerpt from Dr. Janice Harper’s book which may prove helpful: https://bullyinworkplace.com/2013/09/24/suing-a-bully-boss/
If your bully is your boss and most likely it is, and if that boss is a government entity then as it stands right now with bullying being legal you don’t stand a chance! However, unjust and unethical it may be to you, the BULLY is not playing games and will do anything in it’s power to see to it that you are squashed. Thats why it’s so important to get these laws passed and create a government agency with the intent on helping victims and targets with immediate assistance before things get out of hand.
By the same token the perpetrator and their co-horts regardless of their status should be made accountable. Oh and by the way, the co-horts? well, they will be dealt with by the perpetrator eventually
and will also more likely be a future target too. The agency should also be for victims only. None of this dual rep stuff. I mean to say would you go to an attorney that represents employers only? That would be like going to confession with the devil.
There are many unfortunate situations where you may be a victim of workplace bullying by your own boss, in this instance it is very easy to let these situations go by, knowing that if you acted upon it, it would most likely lead to the loss of your job. But ultimately, you should not want to work in an environment where you are being bullied, organisations are definitely a great stepping stone to helping solve many of these situations.