Workplace bullying targets revealed their greatest supporters are family members (45 percent) in a 2011 Workplace Bullying Institute poll. But what’s tragic is the number that came next: 30 percent of respondents said they had NO ONE to support them through their workplace bullying experience. Not a coworker. Not a friend outside work. Not a therapist. Not a spiritual leader. No one.
WBI asserts that this category could be “a healthy reliance, an introspective journey, one characterized by strength and deliberate purpose. But this counters the vast anecdotal record of targets who call WBI for help and who overestimate their power to rectify their employer-generated problem…. [Many] targets are involuntarily left alone to deal with the bullying situation that resulted from the combination of efforts by several do-nothing, intervention-averse people. They may have asked for help and been denied. Hence, they were isolated.”
If roughly 1 in 3 people has been bullied at work, and of those people, about 1 in 3 have no support system in their workplace bullying experience, that means that approximately 1 in 9 people are suffering or have suffered in silence from workplace bullying. That’s nearly 750,000 in Massachusetts alone and more than the population of Boston who due to workplace bullying also have a greater risk for homelessness and suicide. And in Massachusetts, workplace bullying is perfectly legal.
That’s why it’s vital to spread the word about what workplace bullying is and why it needs to stop. No one needs to suffer in isolation.