No workplace can guarantee that an on-the-job accident will never occur. But employers can and are legally required to provide working conditions that minimize all possible risks and dangers.
“Workplace negligence” is a term used to describe the on-the-job incidents that could have been prevented by an employer doing his due diligence to create a safe workplace for everybody. The concrete steps needed to maximize employee safety can vary from industry to industry, depending on the type of work, but there are also underlying fundamental principles that all employers are required to abide. These include providing basic security and safety to keep employees and visitors safe on the job.
Learn about 5 of the most common signs of negligence at work, how to recognize them and what are the needed steps to set things right again.
Confidential information is getting leaked
Whether this occurs around the office coffee station or in the local paper, when sensitive information suddenly becomes common knowledge, you should dig deeper and see what is actually happening.
This particular issue falls under the umbrella of workplace security. Employees have the right to confidentiality regarding pre-hiring tests and credit/background checks, performance reviews, personal contact information and anything else discussed with a supervisor or a representative from human resources in a private setting.
The leaks may happen deliberately or innocently, in conversation, via email or simply by leaving file cabinets unlocked or not logging out of a workstation at night. But regardless of how it happened, the fact that it took place is potential grounds for an employer lawsuit and workplace negligence case.
Employees are getting mugged in the parking lot
Part of every employer’s duty is to provide safe working premises for staff, vendors, and customers, this including the entire scope of the work site, from the driveways and walkways to the parking lots or parking garages, the interior offices and common areas.
The higher the risk related to the industry (ex: industrial or construction sites), the more security and measures may need to be provided to keep staff and visitors protected. Safety basics include adequate lighting, well-maintained
walkways, and parking areas, security measures like locks and alarms, hiring onsite guarding personnel as needed, installing video surveillance cameras and many other similar provisions.
Whether there has been a rash of parking lot car thefts or someone else slips and falls in the office cafeteria each week, the negative impact is a clear sign of worksite negligence unfolding.
A co-worker went postal about his boss or a colleague on social media
Even the most stringent background checks and most thorough pre-employment tests can never deliver a total guarantee that a newly hired employee will be of sound body and mind. But there is a vast gulf in between an employer who is doing her utmost to prescreen new staff and a company who instead opts for the cheaper and more expedient “honor system.”
Unfortunately, there are numerous stories about another employee who decides to express his frustrations towards his boss or co-workers in a defamatory or violent way. People harmed in these incidents could very well have a legal case against their employer if research reveals the company did not take sufficient care in prescreening that employee for mental instability or a history of previous violent/defamatory behaviors during the hiring process. It is important for companies to pay attention to their staff and their actions.
Co-workers are becoming increasingly careless about performing safety checks before and after completing a job
One-time incidents of carelessness from a single employee could indicate simple inattention or perhaps burnout. But habitual neglect or carelessness among a group of workers may signal that a bigger issue is brewing.
The problem may stem from a lack of adequate training to do the job they were hired to do. It could also point to a lack of proper supervision, which may include failure to take appropriate steps that reprimand employees who repeatedly violate workplace safety or security protocols. Whether the careless behavior relates to wearing open-toed
shoes on a closed-toe-only worksite or leaving sensitive documents strewn across the desk after hours, a lack of corrective action on the part of the employer can serve as a red flag to indicate a possible case of workplace negligence.
A fellow employee is repeatedly singled out for bullying or harassment
Workplace bullying and harassment are very real issues for employees today, with 27 percent stating direct experience with bullying at work. And with 72 percent of employers expressing denial that workplace harassment is occurring, it is especially important to be aware of a company’s liability for failing to prevent workplace bullying or harassment from happening.
If the bully or harasser has a history of similar behavior that has gone unaddressed by the employer, there may be more than one type of worksite negligence occurring. There is a failure to take appropriate measures to stop the harassment, and there is an inability to curb such repetitive abusive or harassing behaviors in an employee.
Since surveyed employees state that direct supervisors are most often the ones doing the bullying, it can be particularly difficult to make the choice to file a workplace lawsuit in this situation. Contacting an expert, established attorney for assistance is the best and fastest way to recruit legal support for such a claim.
If you are a victim of workplace negligence, Law Offices of Vastola & Associates. has more than two decades of expertise with handling personal injury, medical malpractice, and other legal matters. Our top priority is to ensure our clients receive just compensation for damage and lost income sustained due to these and other issues. To learn more and schedule a free consultation, contact us at 5617212500 or online at www.vastolaw.com.