Workplace violence is a serious everyday health and safety issue for many workers in Canada, including CUPE members. Violence doesn’t “just happen.” It’s not “just part of the job.” Rather it’s a workplace hazard with specific causes. By better understanding the root causes of violence in the workplace we can more effectively prevent violence and protect workers. No matter what the cause of violence in the workplace, it is a requirement of employers to provide a healthy and safe workplace that is free from violence in all its forms.

The purpose of the Violence Prevention Guidelines is to provide CUPE members with resources to help protect them against violence in the workplace. Far too often, employers develop policies and procedures that react to violence. This is not good enough. This guide focuses primarily on preventing violence, before it happens in the workplace. Through this guide members will gain an understanding of what is violence, the risk factors and consequences of violence, employer’s requirements under legislation, and how workers, unions, and health and safety committees can work together to prevent workplace violence. Throughout the guide, we explore the potential underlying causes of violence and the steps and process that your employer and health and safety committee can take to prevent violence from happening.

The Violence Prevention Guidelines booklet is the primary component of CUPE’s Violence Prevention Kit.