HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 111
(By Delegates Longstreth, Caputo, Manchin, Barker,
D. Poling, Staggers and Frazier)
Requesting the Joint Committee on Government and Finance to study issues surrounding bullying in the workplace and possible remedies for hostile work environments.
Whereas, The social and economic well-being of the state is dependent upon healthy and productive employees; and
Whereas, Between thirty-seven percent and fifty-nine percent of employees directly experience health-endangering workplace bullying, abuse and harassment and this mistreatment is approximately four times more prevalent than sexual harassment alone; and
Whereas, Workplace bullying, mobbing and harassment can inflict serious harm upon targeted employees including feelings of shame and humiliation, severe anxiety, depression, suicidal tendencies, cardiovascular disease and symptoms consistent with posttraumatic stress disorder; and
Whereas, Abusive work environments can have serious consequences for employers including reduced employee productivity and morale, higher turnover and absenteeism rates and increases in medical and workers' compensation claims; and
Whereas, Legal protection from abusive work environments should not be limited to behavior grounded in protected class status as that provided under employment discrimination statuses; and
Whereas, Existing workers' compensation plans and common-law tort actions are inadequate to discourage this behavior or to provide adequate relief to employees who have been harmed by abusive work environments; therefore, be it
Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance is hereby requested to study issues surrounding bullying in the workplace and possible remedies for hostile work environments; and, be it
Further Resolved, That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance report to the regular session of the Legislature, 2013, on its findings, conclusions and recommendations together with drafts of any legislation to effectuate its recommendations; and, be it Further Resolved, That the expenses necessary to conduct this study, to prepare a report and to draft necessary legislation be paid from legislative appropriations to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance.