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Bullies have harassed 14 percent of workers over past 6 months
Date:6/4/2009

Although it is a relatively widespread phenomenon, the experts have still not been able to come up with an all-encompassing and precise definition of workplace abuse or bullying. Basing their work on previous literature, David Gonzlez, of the High Court of Justice of Madrid and Jos Lus Graa, of the Faculty of Psychology at the Complutense University, have defined it in their study as a "process of systematic and repeated aggression by a person or group towards a workmate, subordinate or superior". Their research has been published in the latest issue of Psicothema.

According to the authors of the work, published by Psicothema, "the conclusions reached to date have been highly varied, due to the difficulties in the conceptual definition of mobbing". However, they tell SINC that "workplace abuse is a phenomenon with many causes, can lead to negative consequences in workers, their social and family environment, and can impacts on their job performance".

Gonzlez and Graa were able to describe the characteristics of mobbing within the working population in Spain by using information from the nearly 3,000 valid responses received from the Negative Acts Questionnaire Revised (NAQ-R), which is a specific tool used to measure workplace abuse.

The survey sections are based on the definition of workplace abuse devised by the Norwegian researchers Einarsen and Raknes, which points out that "a one-off incident does not constitute harassment". The sections within the NAQ-R vary from the subtle, such as "someone has withheld information from you, which has affected your performance" to the most serious, "you have felt sexually harassed" or "you have been threatened with violence or physical abuse".

From the data obtained, the researchers tell SINC that 14% of the respondents have confirmed having suffered situations of psychological abuse over the past six months, with 5.8% suffering frequently and the rest, 8.2%, occasionally. In
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Contact: SINC
info@plataformasinc.es
91-425-1820
FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology
Source:Eurekalert

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