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Workplace Violence: Employee Rights, Employer Recourse

An employer’s quest to avoid workplace violence hardly seems controversial. Yet a variety of laws, administrative guidance and case law shape and constrain an employer’s options.

“When it comes to safety,” cautions the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), employers should be careful not to act on the basis of myths, fears, generalizations, or stereotypes.” Objective evidence is the touchstone. Without over- or under-reacting, or running afoul of federal, state and local anti-discrimination laws that protect employees with a wide array of mental disabilities, employers should protect their employees. Some say that task is more easily said than done.

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