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Mesa Shooting Prompts Discussion on Workplace Security


Shayna Balch was quoted in Phoenix Business Journal on March 19, 2015. The article “Mesa Shooting Prompts Discussion on Workplace Security” examined a shooting incident in Mesa on Wednesday morning that left one person dead and five others injured, according to reports.

Shayna said businesses need to take steps that a "reasonable employer" would take to ensure employee safety.

"For example, if the employer is aware that there's a shooting going on outside, but orders an employee to go take out the garbage, they're probably going to be on the hook if that employee gets injured because the employer knew there was a danger but allowed the employee to be exposed to that danger," Shayna said.

Shayna added that security practices vary depending on the type of business and the industry standards. A company can be held liable if it does not provide a similar level of security and protection to businesses in the same industry that experience the same level of risk, she said.

Shayna said the most important factor in dealing with any sort of emergency is having a plan and effectively communicating it to employees.

"Make sure employees are aware of it and know what to do in the event that there is a crisis," Shayna said. "Maybe do drills or dry run-throughs. If there's an active shooter, know to lock doors, shut windows, draw blinds, go to a secure location and have someone assigned to call the police, kind of like a fire drill. That would be a good idea for a proactive employer."

To read the full article, please visit Phoenix Business Journal.

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