What is aggression and violence?

Aggression and violence in the workplace takes many forms. Aggression and violence occurs when an employee is physically or verbally harassed, threatened or attacked. This can be caused by colleagues, but also by third parties (such as a customer or client). Aggression and violence causes a lot of damage, to the victim but also to those involved. A distinction is made between verbal, psychological and physical aggression. Verbal aggression takes the form of, among other things, unwelcome language, intimidation and name-calling. Psychological aggression involves forms of mental abuse. Examples include stalking, humiliation, blackmailing or threatening. Finally, physical aggression is about physical abuse. This comes in different forms such as kicking, vandalising or spitting. Research by FNV shows that nearly two million Dutch people face aggression or violence in the workplace every year. The consequences of this are enormous. Apart from a considerable amount of stress for the victim, aggression and/or violence can cause long-term and sometimes permanent disability.