Workplace bullying is a major issue in workplaces across Canada and can take many different forms. One of the ones that is the hardest to deal with is what is known as ‘mobbing’.
Mobbing is when a worker enlists co-workers to ‘collude in a relentless campaignof psychological terror against a hapless target.’
According to psychologists, the target of the bullying is typically someone who is different from the rest of the group and tend to be women or racialized workers. They also pointed that 30 per cent of all workplace bullying is mobbing, and the trend is growing.
They said that workplaces that are organized by bureaucracy or hierarchy are the most susceptible to this type of bullying.
In Alberta, Alberta Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) has taken notice of workplace bullying and have talked of implementing workplace harassment policies into an update of its code.
If you are experiencing mobbing or bullying at work it is important to document everything that is happening – keep a journal, keep emails and text messages.
Make sure you have mental health support to deal with the bullying. Whether it is by a single person or a group, dealing with bullying can have a huge toll on your mental well-being.
Another option is to contact your trade union about the bullying behaviour – reaching out to a shop steward, business agent or any member you feel comfortable sharing the issue with. If you are not yet a part of a union, calling them and finding out what your rights are is also an action you could take.
Trade unions are there to stand up for all of your rights as a worker and ensure that you are working in a safe and healthy work environment – that definitely includes workplace harassment.