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March Madness 2019

Bullying in the workplace

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“It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt,”…it’s a saying that doesn’t just apply to young people.
Joking and teasing can go too far in the workplace as well and cross the line into bullying.
Cayman 27’s Philipp Richter reports.
“To exude power and control over another person, in order to make yourself feel better and it’s just plain wrong,” said Cindy Blekaitis, Programme Manager for the  Employee Assistance Programme.

An anti-social issue believed to only reside in schools, actually affects the work environment as well.

“There is still that person that wants to be-little you or make you look bad in front of other people, they want to tease you,” said Miss Blekitis.

From light-hearted teasing and office pranks to micro managing all can be forms of bullying in the work place
There are small amounts of victims, But in the workplace, a lot of witnesses, most of whom, don’t stand up for the one being bullied.

“People are afraid to stand up at times because they don’t want to draw attention to themselves because then they could then become the target and be victimized,” said Miss Blekaitis.

Each individual is a part of a work community, as workers see their peers discouraged, they too become discouraged as well.

“So even if you are not ,say, the target of the bullying and harassment, the fact that you know its going on, that’s going to change how you feel about your work place, that is going to change whether you want to come to work,” said Miss Blekaitis.

As word of mouth travels quickly in Cayman, people get the heads up where not to apply.

“A certain company or department might get a reputation about high turn over, high absenteeism.”

Mrs. Blekaitis urges people to speak to their human resources representatives and read about workers rights from the labor department.

She continued, “End of the day, if you feel offended by something, you should be in a safe supportive environment in your work to be able to speak out and say something.”
If you are a victim of office bullying, You can learn more about available resources through this website.


About the author

Philipp Richter

Philipp Richter

Philipp Richter was born in Austria and moved to the Cayman Islands at the age of three. Throughout his life, he has always enjoyed documenting his surroundings with cameras. Studying television broadcasting and communications, he now can show the reality of life in Grand Cayman to the public.

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