(Global) Bullying News
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Know Bull! website was
launched 5 years ago in May 2008, we were a little 'ahead of our
time'. Back then, there was the occasional media story about workplace
bullying and a few good, international anti-bullying websites...but
not much more. Looking back, it seems like there was actually a
'disinterest' about workplace related bullying - especially within the
media. Know Bull! saw it differently and considered bullying as a serious workplace health and
safety issue not only affecting staff...but also undermining the
profits of companies and organisations. It wasn't long before our inbox indicated that workplace bullying was
indeed set to become one of those 'issues' that wasn't going away in a hurry.
In response to communication from our website visitors, we began collating and publishing
facts and information, conducting polls and research...and monitoring trends.
To increase awareness about the devastating impact of workplace bullying on 'targets' and the
financial toll borne by organisations...we established a national workplace anti-bullying day that takes place annually on 3rd June.
But we were still ahead of our time, and the launch of this day was
met by the media with overwhelming silence.
Never-the-less, as of 2013
Know Bull! Day enters its 5th year.
June 2010 we introduced
Bullying Awareness Month
- to provide organisations and individuals with some flexibility in implementing their
Know Bull! Day,
anti-workplace bullying events.
From early on, Know Bull! recognised that while workplace bullying and school
bullying shared some common ground, they had entirely different
origins. In other words - opposite ends of the same stick.
While school bullying is directed at children who are perceived as being
different or an 'easy target', workplace bullying is directed at those
perceived as admired, experienced, and very competent.
We continued to dig into bullying behaviours, worked with organisations
and unions on a global scale to improve workplace cultures to eradicate bullying,
provided organisations with materials to do the same, and conducted
anti-bullying presentations in workplaces.
By early 2009, we'd gathered a lot of information from individuals and organisations who had
communicated with us. And after noticing the beginnings of two distinct trends we sought further information via an online survey.
The Extent & Effects of Workplace Bullying Survey Report (collated late 2009 and published 2010), confirmed a) "strong support for
the introduction of a ‘new’ statutory course of action encompassing the notion of 'the deliberate and/or intentional infliction of a hostile work environment', under which organisations, and workplace bullies could be prosecuted", and b) a strong correlation between workplace bullying and suicide.
At the time we wrote:
The most sobering finding of the Know Bull!
Extent and Effects of Workplace Bullying Survey revealed that 1 in 5 (16.6%) of respondents said that they had “known of, or worked with a staff member who, after being targeted by a workplace bully, later committed suicide”. This statistic on its own indicates that despite OH&S legislation – many ‘unsafe’ workplaces exist, and that perhaps OH&S legislation doesn’t have sufficient ‘teeth’ to curb the existence of workplace bullying, and that workplace bullying (and its effects) should in fact have its own ‘criminal
to herald 'looming' changes regarding workplace legislation - to organisations, and
incorporated this into Know Bull! presentations. And while there were no
'outward' signs of change on the horizon (and still ahead of our
time)...we implored organisations not to wait until the 11th hour...and
to begin working on improving workplace cultures for the sake of their
employees, productivity, bottom line, and ultimately to avoid legal sanctions.
Then in June 2011, and motivated by community groundswell after a court case that
penalised workplace bullies who tragically drove a 19-yr-old Victorian
teenager to commit suicide - the State
Parliament of Victoria passed the Crimes Amendment (Bullying) Bill.
Things began moving quickly.
By May 2012 Australia's Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, announced a national review into workplace bullying. The Parliamentary committee report that followed,
Workplace Bullying: We just want it to
stop, was tabled October 2012. By March 2013
the Australian Federal Government proposed an amendment (The Fair Work Amendment Bill
2013) to the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth). This new Bill is set to become effective from 1st July
2013 and represents a change to existing national laws, while
providing power to the Fair Work Commission to deal with workplace bullying complaints.
The changes Know Bull! heralded in 2010, are now poised to become
only one third of the way through 2013, and there's been an explosion
of information about workplace bullying. These days you can't pick up
a paper or magazine, watch a current affairs or morning news show, or even read an
online news site without coming across something to do with
bullying...or how some organisation, psychologist, group, law firm, or 'guru' can
help people deal with it. Previously relegated to the 'we're not
interested pile', now it seems that workplace bullying...is the new
'little black dress'.
increase in awareness about workplace bullying is a good thing, but
hopefully all this white noise doesn't dilute the message that to
eradicate workplace bullying - action needs to be taken. We
still have a way to go. There's still far too many hard working
and competent employees being 'burned at the stake' - based
solely on the manipulations and fabricated 'underperformance claims'
directed at 'targets' by every workplace bully.
All too often 'targets' are expected to
solve a problem they didn't create, nor invite...a problem that can
rarely be solved without addressing the culture of an organisation.
Bull! still stands by our message that Workplace
Bullies are far too expensive to keep!
And every day - workers, their families, and workplaces - are bearing
the health-related and financial costs of keeping the workplace
bully. It's not easy for a 'target' to break the silence about
the workplace bullying they're enduring, and speaking directly to a
workplace bully is not only ill advised, but fraught with the
possibility of increased bully retaliation. This is why the Know
Bull! website came into being.
the menus at the top of this page you'll find the offerings of Know Bull!
These include: Anti-Bullying (by design),
which provides the bully 'target' (or those interested in preventing
workplace bullying) with a low-effort way to raise bullying and anti-bullying
awareness via anti-bullying products in our online store; a Resources
and Information section,
which includes audio files, videos, tips & hints, articles,
research and other items offering information about workplace
bullying, and our Corporate
Services which include
various tools to raise awareness in the workplace; keynote speech, seminar and workshop
services; and the design and implementation of anti-bullying
workplace policy, strategies, and remedies.
also find other items such as a school
kids' zone, bullying facts and stats, and we've just added a FREE
App, which we encourage our
website visitors to download, and SMS to friends and
colleagues. And if you don't have an iPhone, Blackberry, or
Android device - the App can also be viewed online by Mac and PC.
there's also a page containing 'quick'
web polls - where Know
Bull! seeks the opinions of their web
visitors, and which assist in the ongoing development of the Know
a look around the Know Bull!
website - use what you need - and don't forget to make a note of
'Workplace Bullying Awareness Month' throughout June, and in
particular... Know Bull! Day
on 03 June 2013.