I live in a state where our last governor was just convicted on 17 of 20 counts of various crimes. Our governor previous to him is currently in prison for similar crimes.
But this item from our neighbors to the north caught my eye - it is regarding the Wisconsin Supreme Court and justices allegedly slapping and choking one another- you can read it here.
While I somehow cannot imagine Supreme Court Justices getting physical with one another - I know from doing this job, abuse and violence can happen to anyone...and anyone can be an offender.
What particularly caught my attention was that "the matter was called to the attention of the Wisconsin Judicial Commission, which investigates allegations of misconduct involving judges."
While that may certainly be the role of the Wisconsin Judicial Commission to investigate allegations of "judicial misconduct"....if what is alleged is true, something else is going on here.
It is workplace violence.
It actually "Type 3" Workplace Violence - where the perpetrator(s) are co-workers.
Did you know that according to the most recent Bureau of Justice Statistics report regarding workplace violence* about a quarter (26%) of workplace violence against males and about a third against females were committed by someone with whom the victim had a work relationship? Among the work relationships examined, coworkers were the most likely to attack persons in the workplace. Current or former coworkers committed 16% of workplace violence against males and about 14% against females.
When the Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence (CAEPV) works with employers, one of the first steps in the process is helping them create a policy regarding workplace violence. A policy that makes it clear that no one - employees, managers, vendors, etc - can use workplace time and resources to threaten, abuse or harm anyone.
(I wonder if the Wisconsin State Supreme Court has such a policy? If not, we'd be happy to provide them some samples.)
It should not matter who you are, or what you do - if these people acted this way on the street, or in another place of business, they certainly could have been arrested.
For help with workplace violence policy samples or any other resources, please visit our website at www.caepv.org.
(Update: Apparently we are not the only people who recognize this as workplace violence. Read this article from the Wisconsin State Journal.)
*March 2011, U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Special Report,Workplace Violence 1999- 2009, NCJ 233231