Security and Intelligence Solutions

Benching workplace violence caused by prohibited behavior
Are you doing enough to protect your business, workers, and customers from the risk of workplace violence caused by criminal and disruptive acts or what we call "prohibitive behavior"?

Are you compliant with occupational health and safety regulations on workplace violence?

Did you know workplace violence is a safety AND security issue?

workplace violence
The Occupational Health and Safety Regulation in BC defines violence as the attempted or actual exercise by a person, other than a worker, of any physical force so as to cause injury to a worker, and includes any threatening statement or behaviour which gives a worker reasonable cause to believe that he or she is at risk of injury.

Workplace violence is a safety and security issue. From a safety perspective, the threat to a business manifests itself as a hazard. This hazard may expose a person to a risk of injury or even death. The degree of risk to the person by workplace violence caused by prohibitive behavior is dependent upon the security measures that a business takes.

What is workplace violence?
READ more about workplace violence.
Canada Occupational Health and Safety Regulations
"Work place violence” constitutes any action, conduct, threat or gesture of a person towards an employee in their work place that can reasonably be expected to cause harm, injury or illness to that employee.
The International Labor Organization
"Workplace violence is any action, incident or behaviour that departs from reasonable conduct in which a person is assaulted, threatened, harmed, injured in the course of, or as a direct result of his or her work. External workplace violence is that which takes place between workers (and managers and supervisors) and any other person present at the workplace."



Workplace violence further defined
While workplace violence is recognised as a serious problem, there is no standard, universal definition of "workplace violence". However, every definition embraces several common criteria - inferred or otherwise.
1. violence is explicit or implicit
2. unreasonable behavior is the baseline
3. behavior is verbal or physical
4. impact is physical and / or psychological
There are three sources of violence - workers, those who have a legitimate purpose, and those who have criminal intent.
From an occupational health and safety perspective there are certain work factors, processes, and interactions that can be considered hazards. For example:
1. Working with the public
2. Handling money, valuables or prescription drugs
3. Working in premises where alcohol is served
4. Working alone, in small numbers
5. Being “in the way” of trespasses, thefts, etc.
6. Enforcing rules of conduct
On their own, these hazards are harmless. However, introduce the threat of prohibited behavior into the equation, then the risk of workplace violence becomes real.
Workplace violence is a safety issue.
From a security perspective prohibited behavior is the trigger for workplace violence. It has three constituent elements:
1. Behavior that is criminal or disruptive in nature.
Disruptive meaning any action, incident or behaviour that departs from reasonable conduct
2. Behavior that is violent, or has the potential for violence.
Anyone engaging in prohibited behavior is already acting outside what is considered normative behavior, and potentially outside the law. Therefore, prohibited behavior can create a sense of danger that generates apprehension and eventually fear. If this behavior escalates to the use of physical force intended to hurt, or kill someone, or the use of intimidation tactics then trauma is quite possible.
3. Behavior that is persistent.
The term "persistent behavior" is used to differentiate from what might be a single incident of prohibitive behavior ‐ which may require investigation but only as a single episode, or multiple incidents over a period of time, thereby, requiring a mechanism to track these incidents to determine the level of risk an individual poses to businesses.


Workplace violence is a security issue.
WorkSafe BC has identified robbery and assault, shoplifting, abusive and difficult customers, and unwelcome members of the public as key risks to businesses.
workplace violence
Workplace violence are incidents involving the use of force, as well as threatening statements and behaviours that may lead to physical altercations.

WorkSafe BC defines a workplace critical incident as a sudden and unexpected workplace situation or event that causes a person to experience unusually strong emotional reactions that have the potential to interfere with his or her ability to function. Such events are markedly distressing and usually involve a perceived threat toone’s physical integrity or the physical integrity of someone in close proximity.

"This kind of powerful event can impact the emotional well-being of workers and employers who are directly exposed to the incident."

Any instance of workplace violence is a critical incident
International Labor Organization
"There is a general view that workplace violence can be both physical and psychological and can come from a number of perpetrators, such as customers, clients, co-workers and/or supervisors. Workplace violence can range from verbal abuse and threats to physical violence, sexual harassment and homicide."

The extent of the impact of a critical incident is determined by how it undermine a person's sense of safety, and security in the world.,



worksafe bc international labor organization
Workers Compensation Act
Workers compensation law in British Columbia is set by the Workers Compensation Act ("Act") and its related regulations. WorkSafeBC administers the Act for the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labour.
The Act addresses matters such as:
1. Assisting injured or disabled workers and their dependants,
2. Assessing employers and collecting funds to operate WorkSafeBC,
3. The rights and responsibilities of employers and workers with respect to occupational health and safety,
4. Setting and enforcing occupational health and safety regulations and standards, and
5. Inspecting workplaces, issuing orders, and imposing penalties.
Work safe legislation and best practice
READ MORE BY FOLLOWING THE ARROW TO THE RIGHT Worksafe BC
Workers Compensation Act Part 3, Division 3
115 General duties of employers
Every employer must ensure the health and safety of all workers working for that employer, and any other workers present at a workplace at which that employer's work is being carried out, and comply with this Part, the regulations and any applicable orders. An employer must remedy any workplace conditions that are hazardous to the health or safety of the employer's workers.
"The Occupational Health and Safety Regulation (OHSR) contains legal requirements that must be met by all workplaces under the inspectional jurisdiction of WorkSafeBC.
This includes most workplaces in B.C., except mines and federally chartered workplaces such as banks, interprovincial and international transportation, telephone systems, and radio, television, and cable services.
The purpose of the OHSR is to promote occupational health and safety and to protect workers and other persons present at workplaces from work-related risks to their health, safety, and well-being."


BC Occupational Health and Safety Regulations
"Compliance with the requirements provides the basis on which workers and employers, in cooperation, can solve workplace health and safety problems. The requirements are not an end in themselves, but are a foundation upon which to build an effective health and safety program."
Note: abridged
(2) If a worker is assigned to work alone or in isolation in late night retail premises and there is any risk of harm from a violent act to the worker, then, in addition to any other obligations the employer has must also do one or more of the following - ensure that the worker is physically separated from the public by a locked door or barrier that prevents physical contact with or access to the worker, assign one or more workers to work with the worker during that worker's assignment, implement a violence prevention program.
(2.1) A violence prevention program must include procedures, policies and work environment arrangements necessary to ensure that all of the (stated) requirements are met including the use of video surveillance.



OHS Regulation 4.22.1 Late night retail safety procedures and requirements
The Basics
1. Every employer shall ensure that the health and safety at work of every person employed by the employer is protected.
2. Every employer shall take the prescribed steps to prevent and protect against violence in the work place
3. Once an assessment of the potential for work place violence has been carried out under section 20.5, the employer shall develop and implement systematic controls to eliminate or minimize workplace violence or a risk of workplace violence to the extent reasonably practicable.



Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

The Charter protects the basic human rights to life, liberty and physical and psychological safety (or "security of the person").
Federal legislation
There are two pieces of Federal legislation.
1. Canada Labour Code, specifically s124, and section 125 (z.16)
2. Canada Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, specifically PART XX Violence Prevention in the Work Place


Employers must set up programs to implement the policies [subsection 32.02(1)]. A workplace violence program must include the following:
1. measures and procedures to control risks identified in an assessment of risks
2. measures and procedures for workers to report incidents of workplace violence
3. measures and procedures for summoning immediate assistance, and
4. how the employer will investigate and deal with incidents or complaints.
The Province of Ontario
Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, an employer has a general duty to provide information, instruction and supervision to protect a worker [clause 25(2)(a)].
A supervisor has a duty to advise workers of any actual or potential occupational health and safety dangers of which the supervisor is aware [clause 27(2)(a)].
To protect workers, the employer must tailor the type and amount of information and instruction to the specific job and the associated risks of workplace violence.

Best practice - Keeping workers informed

Who is required to have a violence policy statement and prevention plan?
The following industries must have a violence policy statement and prevention plan as per the regulations.
1. Services provided by health care facilities;
2. Pharmaceutical-dispensing services;
3. Education services;
4. Police services;
5. Corrections services;
6. Other law enforcement services;
7. Security services;
8. Crisis counseling and intervention services;
9. Late night retail premises as defined in the regulations;
10. Financial services;
11. The sale of alcoholic beverages or the provision of premises for the consumption of alcoholic beverages;
12. Taxi services; and
13. Transit services.
The Province of Saskatchewan
The Saskatchewan Employment Act
Duty re policy statement on violence and prevention plan
3‑21(1) An employer operating at a prescribed place of employment where violent situations have occurred or may reasonably be expected to occur shall develop and
implement a written policy statement and prevention plan to deal with potentially
violent situations.

Best practice - Legislative imperative

1. Social dialogue between employers, workers and their representatives, and with Government where appropriate, is a key element in the successful implementation of anti-violence policies and programmes.
2. Governments, employers, workers and their representatives should, in so far as reasonably practicable, promote workplace practices that help to eliminate workplace violence.
Workers and their representatives should cooperate with employers to develop appropriate risk assessment strategies and workplace violence prevention policies.
3. Acts of workplace violence should be recorded as this is important for an organization to learn by its experiences. Employers should review this experience in order to identify patterns and trends, sources of workplace violence as being internal or external, where possible, categories of severity, perpetrator characteristics, and forms of violence.

Best practice - Proactive engagement

International Labour Organization
Code of practice on workplace violence in services sectors and measures to combat this phenomenon
The code promotes a proactive approach to prevention, based on occupational safety and health management systems. It is intended that the provisions of the code will assist in reducing or eliminating violence at workplaces in services sectors.
The primary emphasis for governments, employers, workers and their representatives in dealing with these challenges is to establish and pursue a proactive approach taking into consideration the occupational safety and health management systems approach. Such systems seek to prevent problems through policy, organizing, planning, implementation, monitoring and review, with the aim of enhancing the work environment and organizational efficiency

Under the legislation, an employer has a duty to ensure the health and safety of workers as far as reasonably practicable. Specifically, the employer must take steps to:
1. acquire and maintain up to date knowledge on WHS matters
2. obtain an understanding of the risks and hazards associated with a workplace
3. ensure the workplace has resources and processes in place to enable health and safety risks to be eliminated or minimised
4. ensure the workplace has processes for receiving information about risks, hazards and incidents, and responding in a timely manner
5. ensure the workplace has processes to comply with duties and obligations under the legislation.

Best practice - Managing risk

Safework Australia
Work, health and safety legislation (WHS) in Australia is developed at the state and territory level. Under this legislation, employers are required to provide a safe place to work for their employers and can be prosecuted if they fail to do so. A key focus of WHS legislation is to prevent workplace violence by identifying risks and implementing prevention strategies to limit the risks.






Personal Information Protection Act
Personal information plays a critical role in identifying subjects of interest engaged in workplace violence and associated prohibited behavior.
In BC "Personal information" means information about an identifiable individual and includes employee personal information but does not include contact information, or work product information.
Therefore, in addition to OHS legislative obligations, businesses also need to be compliant with privacy legislation.
Privacy legislation
READ more about Canadian privacy laws and British Columbia's Personal Information Protection Act by using the slides below. The information contained within - whole or in-part, has been drawn from source material, including judgements by the Judiciary and the offices of provincial privacy commissionaires. This information is provided for general information purposes only, and is not to be construed as legal advice.
Personal Information Protection Act
Canadian privacy law is derived from the common law, statutes of the Parliament of Canada and the various provincial legislatures, and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) is the federal privacy law for private-sector organizations. It sets out the ground rules for how businesses must handle personal information in the course of commercial activity.
PIPEDA allows for similar provincial laws to continue to be in effect. Quebec, British Columbia and Alberta have subsequently been determined to have similar legislation, and laws governing personal health information only, in Ontario and New Brunswick, have received similar recognition.
Canadian privacy law
Canadian courts - federal and provincial, have made several rulings on privacy, especially regarding s8 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure. Of import, the Courts have recognized that safety, security, and the suppression of crime are legitimate countervailing concerns.
Personal Information Protection Act
The reasonable expectation of privacy is an element of privacy law that determines in which places and in which activities a person has a legal right to privacy.


A Reasonable expectation of privacy
R v Tessling, 2004 SCC 67 (CanLII)
"Privacy is a protean concept, and the difficult issue is where the “reasonableness” line should be drawn.... At the same time, social and economic life creates competing demands. The community wants privacy but it also insists on protection."
"Safety, security and the suppression of crime are legitimate countervailing concerns. "
.
Personal Information Protection Act
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms in Canada is a bill of rights entrenched in the Constitution of Canada. It forms the first part of the Constitution Act, 1982. On the matter of privacy, the Charter guarantees certain legal rights. Namely:
Section 7 - Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice. Section 7 includes the right of protecting the "psychological integrity" of an individual.

Section 8 - Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure.
The Canadian Charter of Human Rights and Freedom
Personal Information Protection Act
The Personal Information Protection Act (or PIPA) is the keystone legislation that describes how all private sector organizations in BC must handle the personal information of its employees and the public - including those engaged in workplace violence and prohibited activities. Therefore, any public safety initiative that collects, uses, and discloses personal information has to be compliant with PIPA.
ACCESS THE ONLINE LEGISLATION

The Personal Information Protection Act (BC)
The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner
Established in 1993, the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner provides independent oversight and enforcement of B.C.'s access and privacy laws, including The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act ("FIPPA"), and The Personal Information Protection Act ("PIPA"), which applies to private sector "organizations".
WEBSITE


The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner
Personal Information Protection Act
PIPA seeks to address both the right of individuals to protect their personal information and the need for organizations to collect, use and disclose personal information for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances.

Generally speaking, Canada's, Alberta's, and BC's privacy legislation require that organizations collect, use or disclose personal information for appropriate or reasonable purposes, that collection is limited to what is necessary or reasonable to meet those purposes, and that any personal information collected by the organization be appropriately protected against such risks as unauthorized access, collection, use or disclosure.


PIPA - The basics
Key Concepts
1. Consent is required
A. to collect personal information,
B. to use personal information,
C. to disclose personal information,
... for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate or reasonable in the circumstances.
2. Collection is limited to what is necessary or reasonable to meet those purposes.
3. Any personal information collected by the organization is appropriately protected against such risks as unauthorized access, collection, use or disclosure.
Personal Information Protection Act
BC does not have a particular test or set of criteria for assessing reasonableness of purpose. Instead, the Privacy Commissioner assesses reasonableness based on a consideration of relevant circumstances. These circumstances may include:
(1) the kind and amount of personal information being collected
(2) the uses proposed for that personal information
(3) any disclosures the organization intends to make of that personal information.


A Reasonable Standard
R v Tessling, 2004 SCC 67 (CanLII)
Privacy is a protean concept, and the difficult issue is where the “reasonableness” line should be drawn....
At the same time, social and economic life creates competing demands. The community wants privacy but it also insists on protection. Safety, security and the suppression of crime are legitimate countervailing concerns.
The totality of the circumstances
It was established in Edwards (para. 45), and affirmed in Tessling (para. 19), that in assessing the reasonableness of a claimed privacy interest, the Court is to look at the “totality of the circumstances”.
The "totality of the circumstances" test determines the existence of a reasonable expectation of privacy (to focus on all the circumstances of a particular case, rather than any one factor).

Personal Information Protection Act
PIPA is a consent based statute, as consent is the primary authority that allows organizations to collect, use and disclosure personal information. For consent to be valid it must be informed and reasonable.

An organization can collect, use or disclose personal information about an individual if
1. The individual gives consent
2. This Act authorizes the collection, use or disclosure without the consent of the individual.
3. The organization provides the individual with a notice in a form the individual can reasonably be considered to understand, that it intends to collect, use or disclose the individual's personal information for those purposes,
4. The organization gives the individual a reasonable opportunity to decline within a reasonable time to have his or her personal information collected, used or disclosed for those purposes.

Part 3 - Consent
PIPEDA - Valid consent
6.1 For the purposes of clause 4.3 of Schedule 1, the consent of an individual is only valid if it is reasonable to expect that an individual to whom the organization’s activities are directed would understand the nature, purpose and consequences of the collection, use or disclosure of the personal information to which they are consenting.
Provision of consent
(2) An organization must not, as a condition of supplying a product or service, require an individual to consent to the collection, use or disclosure of personal information beyond what is necessary to provide the product or service.
Order P09-01
Former Commissioner Loukidelis considered an initiative where a nightclub used a device to scan customers' identifications as a condition of entry. In that Order, Commissioner Loukidelis noted that "if there is evidence of ongoing illegal activity which has a negative impact on an organization's ability to provide a product or service, the detection and deterrence of the illegality may be found to be integral to the provision of that service".

Personal Information Protection Act
An organization may collect personal information only for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances and that fulfill the purposes that the organization discloses or are otherwise permitted under this Act.

Part 4 - Collection of Personal Information
OIPC File P1 6-6581 4
The collection of a suspect’s image and contact information may be reasonable when the information is necessary to investigate or prosecute the alleged offence.
International Labor Organization
Acts of workplace violence should be recorded as this is important for an organization to learn by its experiences. Employers should review this experience in order to identify patterns and trends, sources of workplace violence as being internal or external, where possible, categories of severity, perpetrator characteristics, and forms of violence.
Personal Information Protection Act
Subject to PIPA, an organization may disclose personal information only for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances and that fulfill the purposes that the organization discloses under section 10 (1), or are otherwise permitted under this Act.

An organization may disclose personal information to another organization without consent of the individual to whom the information relates, if the organization was authorized by section 12 (2) to collect the personal information from or on behalf of the other organization.




Part 6 — Disclosure of Personal Information
PIPEDA - Disclosure without knowledge or consent
(3) For the purpose of clause 4.3 of Schedule 1, and despite the note that accompanies that clause, an organization may disclose personal information without the knowledge or consent of the individual only if the disclosure is
(d) made on the initiative of the organization to a government institution or a part of a government institution and the organization
(i) has reasonable grounds to believe that the information relates to a contravention of the laws of Canada, a province or a foreign jurisdiction that has been, is being or is about to be committed,
(d.1) made to another organization and is reasonable for the purposes of investigating a breach of an agreement or a contravention of the laws of Canada or a province that has been, is being or is about to be committed and it is reasonable to expect that disclosure with the knowledge or consent of the individual would compromise the investigation;












OIPC File P1 6-6581 4
"The disclosure of personal information from the business to XXXXXXXX could be authorized by ss. 18(1)(c) andl8(2) of PIPA. Section 18(1)(c) allows organizations to disclose personal information- without the consent of the individual to whom the information relates - for the purposes of an investigation".

"An individual may assume that information sharing means that a business might share security information, including their personal information, with a security provider or the police in response to an incident. They may even anticipate that a business will share some of their personal information with a neighbouring or related establishment."
Personal Information Protection Act
Subject to this Act, an organization may use personal information only for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances and that
1. Fulfill the purposes that the organization discloses under section 10 (1).
2. Or are otherwise permitted under this Act.


Part 5 — Use of Personal Information
PIPEDA - Use without knowledge or consent
(2) For the purpose of clause 4.3 of Schedule 1, and despite the note that accompanies that clause, an organization may, without the knowledge or consent of the individual, use personal information only if
(a) in the course of its activities, the organization becomes aware of information that it has reasonable grounds to believe could be useful in the investigation of a contravention of the laws of Canada, a province or a foreign jurisdiction that has been, is being or is about to be committed, and the information is used for the purpose of investigating that contravention;