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Workplace Violence Policy


Maryville University strictly prohibits workplace violence, acts of violence and/or threats of violence whether expressed or implied toward individuals on the University campus(es); and such threats will not be tolerated. All reports of incidents will be taken seriously and will be addressed appropriately. This policy defines prohibited conduct, as well as general procedures and potential responsive steps in the unfortunate event that workplace violence occurs despite these preventive measures.

I. Scope

This prohibition against threats and acts of violence (including domestic violence) applies to all persons involved in the University.

II. Definition of Workplace Violence

Workplace violence is any conduct that is severe, offensive or intimidating enough to make an individual reasonably fear for his/her personal safety or the safety of family, friends or property. Refer to Prohibition of Possession of Firearms and Carrying of Concealed Weapons for specific information related to weapons on campus.

III. No-Violence Policy

Any employee who commits workplace violence will be subject to corrective action up to and including termination of employment and direction to stay away from University property. Violators may also be subject to criminal prosecution.

IV. Procedures for Reporting

In the event that an employee believes that a threat or act of violence has been made against the employee or others, the employee should report the details immediately to his/her supervisor, Campus Public Safety or Human Resources. A 9-1- 1 call may be appropriate first, in the good judgment of the employees or managers involved. Nothing in this policy is intended to prevent quick action to stop or reduce the risk of harm to anyone, including requesting immediate assistance from law enforcement or emergency response resources.

Failure to report any threats or acts of violence in violation of this policy is itself a violation of this policy, and may subject any employees involved to corrective action up to and including termination of employment. Retaliation against anyone for reporting an actual or suspected violation of this policy in good faith will not be tolerated and will subject the individual engaging in the retaliation to corrective action up to and including termination. Any complaints about retaliation may be reported in the same manner as violations of this policy are to be reported.

Confidentiality of employees reporting violations of the workplace violence policy to management will be protected to the extent deemed reasonable and appropriate by management. Management will take appropriate action to investigate and address reported violations of the workplace violence policy. Only those people with a legitimate need to know will be informed, which may include persons who are potential targets of workplace violence.

V. Domestic Violence

Domestic violence that negatively impacts the workplace in any manner is a legitimate concern of the University. Domestic violence is defined as a pattern of coercive tactics carried out by an abuser against an intimate partner (the victim) or intimate partner’s property at the workplace with the goal of establishing and maintaining power and control over the victim.

Threats of this nature endanger not only the victim but also others in the workplace and should be reported to the employee’s supervisor, Campus Public Safety or Human Resources so that appropriate precautions can be taken. If an order of protection has been obtained, employees should provide notification of such to Campus Public Safety and Human Resources.

VI. Workplace Searches and inspections

To protect the property and safety of employees, students and others present at the University, and to prevent the use and possession of weapons in the workplace, the University may conduct a search of any employee’s work area and property/equipment. Employees have no expectation of privacy in any University property or equipment or in any personal property or equipment brought onto University property. In the event that a search reveals violations of University policies, the offending employee(s) will be subject to corrective action up to and including termination of employment. Any illegal activity discovered during an inspection is subject to referral to the appropriate law enforcement authorities.

VII. Confidentiality and Safety

These provisions on workplace violence are intended to protect the safety of all employees, and are in no way intended to infringe on an employee’s privacy. The primary goal of these guidelines is to encourage an open, ongoing dialogue with the affected employee, and those within the University who need to know, so that the University can take reasonable steps to protect workplace safety. The University’s goal is to handle all situations with utmost sensitivity to the particular situation, while meeting the goal of workplace safety and security.

VIII. What to Expect from the University

All incidents of violence and threats of violence that are reported will be taken seriously and investigated. Retaliation against the reporting party is prohibited. The University will decide whether its workplace violence policy has been violated and whether preventive or corrective action is appropriate.