On December 14, 2012 a young man walked into Sandy Hook Elementary School then proceeded to shoot and kill 20 students and six of the faculty members. “The school's security protocol had recently been upgraded, requiring visitors to be individually admitted after visual and identification review via video monitor. Doors to the school were locked at 9:30 am each day, after morning arrivals. The gunman, Adam Lanza, shot his way in, defeating the security system that required visitors to be buzzed in” (Barron, 2012). Similarly, on November 5th 2009 Major Nidal Hasan, an Army psychiatrist opened fire at a Soldier Readiness Processing (SRP) center. During his rampage he shot over 43 people, fatally wounding 13 of them. This incident occurred on Fort Hood Army Installation, which was thought of to be a secure location for Soldiers and their families to work and live. The above mentioned events have been classified as school and workplace violence. As mentioned earlier, “In 2011, 458 workplace homicides occurred, a decrease from 518 in 2010 and 542 in 2009. Since 1993, the number of workplace homicides declined 57 percent from 1,068 to 458” (Statistics, 2012). The question is what implementations have caused this drastic decline? As we have seen in the past, school and workplace violence are largely unpredictable, however, there are a series of preventions and precautions that can be implemented to help reduce the likelihood of such an event. We will explore some of the predominant preventions and precautions used by organizations today.
Prevention of school and workplace violence should be the cornerstone of any organization. The first step in sending a clear message to the students and/or employees within an organization is to have a strong anti-violence policy, which has been mentioned previously. These policies should be direct, and express any recourse to be taken should they be violated. They will set the tone and atmosphere in which the students and employees will operate during their day to day routines. However, simply creating such policies alone will not prove fruitful. The policies, once created, are required to be known by all, preferably through the leadership of the organization. This will send a clear message to the population expressing the leadership’s zero tolerance of such actions. Schools should incorporate anti-bullying policies. These “positive climate campaigns suggest alternatives to bully, victim and bystander behavior, while encouraging self-reflection, helping and understanding others” (Stuart W. Twemlow, 2004). As with any policy there has to be a certain percentage of compliance for such a program to work. Dr. Stuart W. Twemlow “has found that about 75% of the teachers need to buy into a program for it to be effective” (Stuart W. Twemlow, 2004).
Creating a healthy workplace
As the amount of school and workplace violence climbed during the late 1970s through the early 1990s the triggers in which inflicted them...