Dealing with Workplace Bullying When You Are Visually Impaired by Empish J. Thomas - Vision Aware – American Foundation for the Blind

Jan 13, 2017, 12:37 PM

This podcast is produced by the Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network, part of State Services for the Blind, and it is recorded for people who are blind or have reading disabilities. You can register as a customer of State Services for the Blind to access many other services that they offer by going to Complete programming of the Radio Talking Book is available at and the password is rtb. (music) Vision Aware – American Foundation for the Blind Dealing with Workplace Bullying When You Are Visually Impaired Posted on 10/19/2016
by Empish J. Thomas When I hear the word "bullying" I tend to envision a big size kid physically and verbally harassing a smaller size kid on the playground at school. Although this vision of bullying is not incorrect it is not the only kind of bullying that occurs. Bullying can also occur on the Internet via social media like Facebook. Additionally, I am coming to understand that bullying does not only happen to children at school but to adults as well. When bullying happens to adults a popular location is at work. You can experience bullying in the workplace and not have the tools to protect yourself. Or you can be bullied and not even know it because it can be subtle and not very obvious. But for those that are reading this blog post take courage. Below we will share useful tips, suggestions, and what the law says about protecting yourself as a person with a disability from workplace bullying. Definition of Bullying First let’s define what is bullying so that you are clear on exactly what it is. According to the Texas Council on Developmental Disabilities, "bullying in the workplace occurs when one or more people are hostile or mean toward another person on an ongoing basis. Bullying is not typically considered acceptable adult conduct. Workplace bullying is an effort to undermine and harm another person by threatening that person’s professional status, self-confidence, and/or ability to perform. Bullying is harassment and in severe cases can even be verbal or physical abuse and/or assault. Harassment involves annoying and continued actions, which can include threats and demands, as well as uninvited and unwelcome verbal or physical conduct. Verbal or physical bullying that is abusive is considered assault and there are criminal laws that can lead to the arrest and prosecution of a bully." How Do You Know that You Are Being Bullied? Now that you have the definition of workplace bullying; the next step is to figure out if it is happening to you or not. Sometimes it is hard to accept that bullying is taking place. A person might think they are over reacting or blame themselves for what is happening to them. People might mistakenly think that bullying comes only from their supervisor; but it can also come from co-workers, customers and clients. Here are some examples of what bullying actually looks like: • Uses abusive, insulting, or offensive language toward you. For example talking about your visual impairment in a negative or derogatory way. • Leaves you out of important work meetings. • Leaves you out of social circles or functions at work. • Gives you amounts of work that are not realistic. • Gives you jobs that are impossible to be performed in the time given. • Does not give you information you need to do your job. • Changes your hours or schedules your hours so that they are difficult to meet. • Gives you pointless tasks that have nothing to do with your job. • Unfairly denies personal leave or training. • Regularly threatens to reprimand or fire you. • Yells at you or criticizes you in front of others. • Uses or threatens physical violence toward you. • Pushes, shoves, trips, or grabs you in the workplace. • Requires you to do humiliating or inappropriate things. by Neva Fairchild What Can a Person Who Is Visually Impaired Do to Combat Bullying? Don’t be silent. Bullies control through intimidation, and they count on you to stay quiet. Talk to ...