If asked to identify an occupational group that has been pro-active in addressing workplace bullying and related behaviors, nurses would quickly come to mind.
Over the years I’ve had many interactions with nurses of different certification levels and with organizations that represent their interests, ranging from participation in workshops and conferences to individual exchanges. Here in Massachusetts, for example, I’ve spoken at programs on bullying at work sponsored by the Massachusetts Nurses Association and the Massachusetts Association of Registered Nurses, and the latter has endorsed the anti-bullying Healthy Workplace Bill.
Nurses are uniquely situated to address workplace bullying for several reasons:
First, bullying is common in the healthcare workplace, and nurses are on the receiving end of it from doctors and other nurses. This is no small matter to them.
Second, nurses are at the heart of healthcare workplaces. They see a lot and they know a lot, and they are in a position to understand how organizational dots connect.
Third, many nurses are unionized. This provides them with a structure for raising concerns about mistreatment at work through advocacy, member education, and collective bargaining.
Finally, nurses are part of a professional structure that includes health care associations and colleges of nursing. These entities can play a key role in education, prevention, and response.
Lots of blog posts!
I’ve written many posts about nurses, workplace bullying, and related topics on this blog. Here is a good sampling: