Over One-Third of American Workers say that their Workplace is not Prepared to Handle an Active Shooter Event

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A recent national Qualtrics poll, co-authored by Marlin, a Connecticut-based workplace communications company, and Sigal Barsade, Professor of Management at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, revealed that 36% of workers say that their workplace is not prepared to handle an active shooter event. Nearly half of all workers say that their workplace has not provided them with an active shooter emergency plan.

In a recent national workplace study, 36% of workers say that their workplace is not prepared to handle an active shooter event. Millennials report being the most concerned about an active shooter event in the workplace, with 28% saying that they’re worried, followed by 22% of Gen Xers and 14% of Baby Boomers.

The Qualtrics poll, co-authored by Marlin, a Connecticut-based workplace communications company, and Sigal Barsade, Professor of Management at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, surveyed a national sample of 1,048 full- and part-time American workers in March 2018.

Workers who trust their organizations more are less worried about an active shooter event and believe that their employers are more prepared to handle such an event. People who show more trust in the news media are less worried about an active shooter event in their workplace, while people who show more trust in social media are more worried.

Nearly half of all workers (47%) say that their workplace has not provided them with an active shooter emergency plan.

Frank Kenna, President and CEO of Marlin, says the lack of planning and communication may be a result of lack of awareness.

“We’re all aware of the recent rash of school shootings, but most people might be surprised to know that most active shooter events occur in places of business. Most people have no idea that there are so many homicides in the workplace—500 in 2016, alone. I don’t recall seeing them reported in the national press. This lack of publicity is likely contributing to the lack of preparedness in our workplaces.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, which has released data documenting active shooter events between 2000-2016, encourages all businesses to develop an Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) that includes plans for an active shooter event. Communication with stakeholders is listed as a critical component of any effective EOP.

“Our survey finds that employees—America’s front-line stakeholders—trust their organizations, and that there’s a strong correlation between workers’ overall trust and organizational communication,” says Kenna. “In terms of being prepared for an active shooter event, employers have an opportunity—and responsibility— to make sure that trust is well-placed.”

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Carolyn Voelkening

Frank Kenna
@themarlinco
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