If you have ever experienced numerous occasions larger than a mere unease in the workplace due to harassment, discrimination, or even dismissal, you need to know that there are workplace bullying laws in place to protect your rights. Although you may not want to face the facts because of causing unnecessary problems, you can actually be doing your company a favor by making them aware of situations that are against the law. Management often only hears one side of the story and by presenting your side you could not only be helping yourself but also saving the company thousands of dollars from lawsuits – not to mention company shame – that can occur when breaches of workplace bullying laws take place.
Several workplace bullying laws exist today that were put into place to protect the rights of individuals unable to perform their jobs to the best of their ability due to bullying from small groups, individual bullies and employers.
The Protection from Harassment Act of 1997 is a good example of what you can look for if you are unsure as to whether or not you are experiencing problems that may be covered under Workplace Bullying Laws.
Defamation of character is one of the provisions under the 1997 Harassment Act that serves to protect you from a bully’s vindictive remarks or the spreading of untrue rumors in order to cause harm to your character. The Criminal Justice & Public Order Act of 1994 also addresses intentional harassment for using abusive or threatening words or behavior towards another in the workplace.
The Employment Rights Act of 1996 was put into place to prevent unfair or wrongful dismissal. The Health & Safety at Work Act of 1994 gives you the right to a safe working environment and the Public Interest Disclosure Act of 1998 protects you against turning in someone that is a detriment to the public interest.
Psychiatric injury is becoming more prominent in workplace bullying laws due to unjust humiliation, employer’s failure to protect employees from bullying and harassment that could result in injury. There have been cases of suicide due to continued victimization from employees or an employer and new workplace bullying laws are now being introduced to address this problem in a big way.
In Australia, employers can now be fined up to $100,000 for failing to manage bullying behavior among workers and Sweden has added provisions against Victimization at Work under the Occupational Safety and Health Ordinance.
Bullying costs companies and individuals thousands of dollars each year by interrupted work habits, physical and psychological damage and undue dismissal of employment. Everyone has the right to work in an environment that is free from prosecution, is safe from injury and is non-discriminatory. If you’re located in the UK, check with law centers in the UK for free legal advice if you feel that your company is in violation of Workplace Bullying Laws.
© By Mandy-Jane Clarke