Workplace Violence: Please Pass S.1746 (Ramos)/A.1120 (Joyner)
As a constituent who cares about the safety of students and staff in our schools, I urge you to support S.1746 (Ramos)/A.1120 (Joyner), which adds school districts to the list of public employers required to develop and implement programs to prevent workplace violence.
Sadly, violence remains an increasingly visible element in schools throughout our state. Small and rural, suburban, urban, BOCES and Special Act schools are all witnessing an increase in violent behavior.
The passage and enactment of this legislation would allow school districts to be more proactive in preventing and addressing school violence and assist school districts in identifying and mitigating potential safety problems to ensure safe working and learning environments for all their employees and the students they serve.
The bill would also require public school districts to develop and implement a written workplace violence prevention program and would further require school staff to receive training on strategies to protect themselves from violence or other dangerous situations in the workplace. This training would be based on individual workplace evaluations. Finally, the bill would authorize any public employee, or a representative of such employee, who believes that an imminent danger or a serious violation of a safety or health standard exists and has not been sufficiently addressed, to request an inspection by the Department of Labor.
We owe it to our students and school staff to make sure that schools are safe from violence, which can be prevented if public schools are allowed to develop and implement programs to prevent workplace violence. When provided with the proper tools, teachers, administrators, parents, community members and even students can reduce violence and improve the school environment.
Thank you for your consideration of this important matter. I respectfully ask that you bring up this issue with your conference and I look forward to a reply to my email.