Workplace Violence in Light of HS
The work sphere is a very important area in the life of every person. The workplace should be a setting where people can realize their full potential and a setting where individuals can earn the income needed to provide adequate living conditions for themselves and their family – in fact, a setting for achieving personal security. There are numerous factors, however, which influence the workplace so that it not only ceases to be a source of personal security, but becomes a setting where various forms of insecurity are expressed. The type of employment, working conditions, amount and regularity of income, social relations in the working environment (both among employees and employers/managers, and among workers themselves) can vary to a great extent, and make individuals feel (in)secure.
In the context of the HS approach, analysis focuses on how secure individuals feel at their workplace. It is important to note, however, that the subjective feeling of security is, in this case, closely related to the way the entire social system is positioned, i.e. it is linked to broader structural factors. Difficulties in accessing the labour market, the lack of decent employment, constant fear of loss of employment, income which is insufficient for fulfilling personal needs or even for ensuring mere survival, the poor attitude of superiors towards employees, the inability of workers to influence company decisions which directly or indirectly impact them, are only a few sources of personal insecurity and represent forms of expressing what we can call workplace violence. “It is important to note that ‘violence’ is understood as a severe insecurity which can be manifested in direct, structural and symbolic ways (Galtung, 1990). Bearing this in mind, violence does not only refer to direct forms of violence which includes different types of violence such as physical, psychological, economic and sexual violence, but rather also structural and symbolic forms which are broader and refer to different forces which are limiting and threatening people in their everyday lives” (HS Country Report – Serbia, 2015).