We have previously mentioned HB 591 in our communications. This bill is SEA member driven as it resulted from a Resolution adopted at the SEA’s 2012 Annual Convention. HB 591 is a bill that is “relative to an abusive work environment and the health and safety of public employees.” Workplace bullying is, “any language or behavior that should not be tolerated.” The bullying can take place between co-workers or between supervisors and employees. Singling someone out and treating them differently than everyone else is a form of bullying. So is speaking with a raised voice, belittling someone, humiliating someone, or gossiping about someone.
The bill is being heard by the Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitative Services Committee this coming Tuesday, Feb. 19 at 2:15 p.m. in the Legislative Office Building, Room 307. We urge any members who have been on the receiving end of any of the disrespectful and unacceptable behavior this bill is attempting to address to please come forward and testify. If you wish to remain anonymous, you can write your testimony and it can be turned in, as well. This is a difficult and sensitive issue that can no longer be tolerated. You may also write to members of the Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitative Services Committee.
“This Legislation is really about human dignity. HB 591 provides legal protections for victims of workplace bullying and aggression,” said Anne Keach a member of the SEA committee that has been working on the bill. New Hampshire joins other states in introducing healthy workplace legislation and I am really proud of that! The impetus for introducing this legislation is to expose the serious harm to employees and employers caused by workplace bullying. It is one of the most neglected forms of worker abuse.”
Ann believes “it is just a matter of time before workplace bullying laws become an actuality, and New Hampshire’s public workers will enjoy greater protections from this destructive form of interpersonal abuse.” To learn more about this bill read this article.