Workplace Violence : NCIS

Workplace Violence : NCIS


Most workplaces are safe. However, an estimated 1.7 million workers are victims each year of assault in the workplace, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. These assaults take many forms, from bullying and harassment to threats or physical assault. Even in the safest workplace -- and most workplaces are very safe -- acts of violence occur. We all share a responsibility to help keep our workplaces safe and secure. In this article you'll read about ways you can promote a safer workplace -- by learning to recognize problem behavior and by turning to your supervisor, human resources (HR) representative, or a consultant from your employee assistance program (EAP) should you have a safety concern.

People who commit acts of violence generally give off warning signs. If an employee, customer, vendor, delivery person, or anyone in your workplace exhibits any of the following signs, report your concerns to your command leadership. Contact your command if you witness or experience any of the following behaviors:

  • direct or indirect threats of any kind
  • any type of physical assault
  • a regular pattern of intimidating, harassing, or aggressive behavior, including bullying behavior
  • an uncontrollable or explosive temper
  • stalking
  • bringing a weapon to work or an excessive fascination with weapons
  • repeated fascination with incidents of workplace violence
  • a report of domestic abuse
  • stealing from the company or other employees
  • damaging company property or repeated safety violations

These are other behaviors that are not as serious as those above but if taken together may warrant reporting as well. If in doubt it is always better to err on the side of reporting. Contact your command if you witness or experience any of the following behaviors:

  • difficulty accepting authority or accepting criticism
  • symptoms of substance-abuse problems
  • sudden or marked changes in behavior
  • frequent arguing or frequent conflicts with co-workers, customers, vendors, or delivery people
  • telephone or e-mail harassment, including offensive jokes
  • unwelcome sexual comments or advances
  • excessive swearing
  • isolation from co-workers
  • frequent disputes over discipline or termination

To report a threat or safety concern, take these steps:

  • Take threats seriously. Even if someone says that their violent comments were a joke, report the threats. Let a professional evaluate the situation.
  • Contact your EAP if you wish to speak confidentially with someone about your concerns. The toll-free call is private and all of the information that you discuss with an EAP consultant is confidential. The only exceptions to confidentiality are situations involving child abuse or if there is a threat of imminent danger to oneself or others. Even in these situations only appropriate authorities will be notified.
  • Respect the confidentiality of others. Talk with your supervisor or an EAP consultant about the problem but not with co-workers.
  • Do not try to diagnose a problem or handle a troubling situation on your own. If you have a concern, discuss it with your supervisor, your HR representative, or an EAP consultant. A professional will handle the matter and determine what action to take.

Certain types of stress may make you less observant and less sensitive to others' behavior. To help ensure the best possible work environment, take care of yourself during stressful times, particularly when you are experiencing any of the following:

  • Personal difficulties. For help dealing with marital or family difficulties, relationship difficulties, legal problems, or financial problems, talk with an EAP consultant.
  • Excessive workload. If you feel overloaded or are working extra-long hours or shifts, talk with your supervisor about ways to reduce the overload.
  • Co-worker conflicts. If you are having problems with a co-worker or there is friction in your department, talk with your supervisor or an EAP consultant about ways to handle the problem.

By turning to your command leadership, or an EAP consultant when you have safety concerns or need support, you help promote the safest workplace possible.

Contact Information

Phone number
Mailing address:
Naval Criminal Investigative Service, Iwakuni Resident Agency
PSC 561 BOX 1870
FPO AP 96310

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