By now, safety and security managers have each built strong portfolios in the enterprise. Indeed, reporting hierarchies often reflect the importance the C-suite places on topline safety and security priorities, objectives like keeping employees safe at work or mitigating threats to facilities and people. In turn, businesses of all shapes and sizes, in all vertical markets, have implemented a standalone safety and security management system to pursue those objectives.
Initially, the siloing seemed justified, at least on a theoretical level. After all, safety managers primarily focus on the unintentional, non-malicious threats to people, process, systems, and the environment caused by human error. Conversely, security managers focus on intentional, malicious threats to physical assets and people perpetrated by intentional human actors.
But the practical, on-the-ground siloing of Safety and Security programs has had major implications, both for the organization’s ability to prevent loss and to maintain its duty of care obligations to employees. The two objectives are very much linked, as should be the policies, procedures, and tools to achieve them.
Not convinced? Take the example of healthcare workers. Across the globe, healthcare workers face significant risks of intentional, occupational violence, whether they’re operating in hospitals, smaller clinics, residential treatment facilities, community care settings, or in the field. In the U.S. alone, a staggering 25 percent of fatalities in the sector are due to assaults and other violent acts.
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