Contemporary studies are emerging that indicates workplace bullying is widespread but under reported and under identified (Namie & Namie, 2001). Workplace bullying (harassment) has been recognised as a breach of workplace code of conduct and an ethical violation under Workplace Health and Safety Act 1995. Furthermore, the Australian Psychological Society (2004) suggests that approximately 70% of workers are currently, or have been bullied and experience a bullying culture in their workplace. In New South Wales, bullying is believed to be the number one occupational health and safety issue (Lalande, 2009).
The existing legislation within Australia appears to be insufficient to protect or prevent Australian workers being bullied in their work environments. It appears Australian society is at a critical point with workplace bullying being identified as being at epidemic proportions. The Australian Government needs to review its policies, procedures and legislation in the interest of workplace safety to ensure the human rights of Australian workers are protected.
It is no longer acceptable to band-aid bullying in the workplace, no one deserves or asks to be bullied. Everyone has the right to a work environment free from bullying, harassment, discrimination and violence.
So the question remains... who really is responsible for Workplace bullying?