Bullying is a significant workplace hazard and can have a serious impact on a workplace.
WorkSafe has defined workplace bullying as repeated and unreasonable behaviour directed towards a worker or a group of workers that creates a risk to health and safety.
- “Repeated behaviour” is persistent and can involve a range of actions over time.
- “Unreasonable behaviour” means actions that a reasonable person in the same circumstances would see as unreasonable. It includes victimising, humiliating, intimidating or threatening a person.
A single incident of unreasonable behaviour is not considered workplace bullying, but it could escalate and should not be ignored.
Bullying decreases employee health and wellbeing, which may lead to increased sick leave, staff resignations and job dissatisfaction.
WorkSafe has published a guide and resource book, Preventing and Responding to Workplace Bullying, to assist employers to identify, prevent and deal promptly with workplace bullying and foster a safe and productive workplace for all employees.