A report released today by the University of Iowa says workplace violence is a significant public health problem. Dr. James Merchant led the effort to compile the report by the U-of-I’s “Injury Prevention Research Center.”Merchant says there’s an epidemic of violence with some six to 700 deaths in the workplace each year and some two million injuries. He says violence is the leading cause of workplace death among women. Merchant says that’s just the events that get reported.There are millions more events that result in psychological trauma and cost businesses multi-billion dollars each year in lost productivity and health costs. Merchant, a professor of public health, says the study recommends national research on the issue.The research would help employers find the best programs to prevent workplace violence. He says there also needs to be a federal workplace violence law. Merchant says it’s a problem for every workplace in America.Merchant says the report recommends that the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health lead a combined effort by federal agencies to do the research.
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