Workplace Violence Prevention
UCI is committed to maintaining a safe and healthy workplace. Incidents of workplace violence cannot be ignored. Their magnitude and increasing frequency should be sufficient warnings to employees and employers alike. No one is immune from this calamity.
UCI has established a Consultation Team which is responsible for the overall implementation and maintenance of UCI's workplace violence prevention plan. The Consultation Team's purpose is to respond to reports of threats or acts of violence.
The Consultation Team consists of the Chief of Police and representatives from the Counseling Center and Student Affairs. In addition, a departmental representative (director, manager, supervisor) of a particular employee shall also participate on the Consultation Team for the duration of the incident resolution.
There are no guarantees against workplace violence. Some of the nation's most responsible employers, with sophisticated procedures for preventing violence, have experienced occasional incidents of workplace violence. Nevertheless, knowledge of these procedures is our best approach to use in the event of an incidence of workplace violence.
All UCI employees are required to report immediately to their supervisor, the Police, or to Human Resources any acts or threats of violence occurring at UCI. No employee will be retaliated against for reporting any threats or acts of violence.
- All urgent and/or potentially dangerous threats or acts of violence must immediately be reported to the UCI Police (949) 824-5223 or in an emergency, 911.
- All non-urgent threats should be reported to the supervisor who will then consult with the appropriate Consultation Team Member.
- Acts or threats of violence will be investigated by the UCI Police and/or Human Resources in a timely manner. Human Resources, in conjunction with Consultation Team will recommend a plan of action, with regard to the employee(s) in question.
Record keeping and documentation shall be carefully maintained by Human Resources and the Employee's department, both to protect the employee as well as the University. Every effort will be used to maintain the employee's right to privacy. In cases where other employees are considered potentially in danger, management, in consultation with the Consultation Team representative, will convey a warning to the employee(s) involved and provide notice to the UCI Police Department.
Recognizing Early Warning Signals
- Direct or veiled verbal threats of harm.
- Intimidation of others by words or actions.
- Carrying a concealed weapon or flashing a weapon to test reactions.
- Hypersensitivity or extreme suspiciousness.
- Extreme moral righteousness.
- Unable to take criticism of job performance.
- Holds a grudge, especially against a supervisor.
- Often verbalizes hope for something to happen to the person against whom the employee has the grudge.
No one signal alone should cause concern, but a combination of these items should be a cause for concern and action.
Elements of Strong Written Records
When an employee reports an incident to you, record what they witnessed. This section addresses what to record.
- Who - Who was the perpetrator of the incident and who else was present as a witness to the incident?
- What - What exactly happened? The "what" of a report includes all of the facts and may also include your assessment of those facts.
- When - When did the incident occur? If there were smaller events leading up to the main incident, when did those events occur?
- Where - Where did this incident happen?
Suggested Guidelines: Do's and Don'ts
- Project calmness: move and speak slowly, quietly and confidently.
- Focus your attention on the other person to let them know you are interested in what they have to say.
- Maintain a relaxed yet attentive posture and position yourself at a right angle rather than directly in front of the other person.
- Accept criticism in a positive way. When a complaint might be true, use statements like "You are probably right" or "It was my fault." If the criticism seems unwarranted, ask clarifying questions.
- Acknowledge the feelings of the other person. Indicate that you can see he or she is upset.
- Use styles of communication which generate hostility such as apathy, brush off, coldness, going strictly by the rules, or giving the run-around.
- Reject all of the person's demands from the start.
- Make sudden movements which can be seen as threatening. Notice the tone, volume and rate of your speech.
- Challenge, threaten, or dare the person. Never belittle the person or make him or her feel foolish.
- Try to make the situation seem less serious than it is.
- Invade their personal space. Make sure there is a space of 3' to 6' between you and the other person.
Management Response Team
UCI Police Department (24 hrs)
For help & information, on non-urgent threats, call the following: