The Workplace Violence Epidemic

In the high-tension hospital atmosphere, threats must be mitigated by diligent adaptation of security policies and procedures

This will continue as security leaders like Michelman take creative approaches to adding value through their function. Massachusetts General works to minimize domestic violence-related injuries by offering services including home security assessments and assistance navigating court processes in order to press charges or file restraining orders. They also have a strong community policing model through which they send their own certified and trained personnel to do risk assessments of offsite facilities.

“I think doing those assessments and partnering with the people that work in those areas to look at strengths, weaknesses, recommendations for improvement and to prioritize implementing those improvements have really lowered the risk vulnerability and potential for criminal and unethical behavior to occur,” Michelman says.

Warren and Gibbs have seen a trend in management interest in moving security management to the network through implementation of IP equipment, for example. “Technology is wonderful—a force multiplier and a great tool — but you can’t rely on it alone,” Warren says. “You have to have well-trained, motivated security personnel, and you have to rely on your staff, because security is everyone’s responsibility. Everyone has to be the eyes and ears, and if the security culture of the organization is such that people understand what their responsibilities are, that’s really your best tool.”


Marleah Blades is Senior Editor for the Security Executive Council (, a leading problem-solving research and services organization focused on helping businesses effectively manage and mitigate risk. For information, e-mail, or follow the Council on Facebook and Twitter.