University Policies
Policy Contact
James Jackson Captain Department of Public Safety Email 401-863-3322

Workplace Violence


Brown University requires the commitment of all employees to promote a safe environment. As a concerned community, it is our collective responsibility to report acts of intimidation or violence. The University is committed to working with its employees to maintain a work environment free from violence, threats of violence, harassment, intimidation, stalking, domestic violence, and other disruptive behavior. While this kind of conduct is not pervasive at our university, no institution is immune. Every place of work will be affected by disruptive behavior at one time or another. 

Policy Statement

Brown University does not tolerate violence or domestic violence, or any form of threat or intimidation in the workplace, including offices, facilities, work sites, vehicles or other locations where university business is conducted. Violence or domestic violence perpetrators may be removed from the premises and may be subject to arrest and/or criminal prosecution. Employees who perpetrate violence or domestic violence in the workplace, or who use University facilities, property or resources to perpetrate violence or domestic violence, are subject to disciplinary action, including dismissal.

Violence, threats, harassment, intimidation, domestic violence, and other disruptive behavior in our workplace will not be tolerated; that is, all reports of incidents will be taken seriously and will be dealt with appropriately. Such behavior can include oral or written statements, gestures, or expressions, and forms of violence or domestic violence that communicate a direct or indirect threat of physical harm. Indicators of potentially violent behavior may include one or more of the following:

  • Increased use of alcohol and/or illegal drugs;
  • Unexplained increase in absenteeism, and/or vague physical complaints;
  • Depression/Withdrawal;
  • Increased severe mood swings, and noticeably unstable or emotional responses;
  • Increasingly talks of problems at home;
  • Increase in unsolicited comments about violence, firearms, and other dangerous weapons and violent crimes.

This policy applies to all work locations including offices, work sites, vehicles, and field locations. The policy covers incidents involving university members and incidents involving individuals from outside the university perpetrating violence against members of the university. Individuals who commit such acts may be removed from the premises and may be subject to disciplinary action, criminal penalties, or both. 


Domestic violence: Domestic violence is physically and/or psychologically abusive behavior that a household member or dating partner uses to establish and maintain control over another person. Such behavior can be violent or threaten violence, and may result in physical or emotional harm or otherwise place a person's safety and productivity at risk. 


Employees: Employees are required to immediately report acts of workplace violence to their supervisor, manager or University Human Resources. Employees should contact the Department of Public Safety if they believe an act of workplace violence is imminent. (See contact information below).

Supervisors and managers: Supervisors and managers are to take intimidating or threatening behavior and acts of workplace violence seriously. Contact University Human Resources or the Department of Public Safety regarding appropriate action for each circumstance. 


Employees are required to immediately report violent threatening, harassing, intimidating, or other disruptive behavior that is observed in the workplace, whether the behavior is directed toward someone who is a Brown employee or not. Reports of such behavior must be made to a supervisor or manager or to the Department of Public Safety or University Human Resources.

If you have been a victim of any of the aforementioned behaviors, please report such occurrences to your supervisor or manager or to the Brown University Department of Public Safety.

Supervisors and managers who receive such reports are expected to seek advice from the Brown University Department of Public Safety and the Director of Labor & Employee Relations regarding appropriate action.

Threats or assaults that require immediate attention by the Department of Public Safety should be reported directly to them by calling 4111 on the Main Campus or 911 for dialing off of the Main Campus.

Members of the University Community that have obtained protective and restraining orders should contact the Brown University Department of Public Safety and provide them with a copy of the order even if the order has been issued in another state. Such a step enables the Department of Public Safety to enforce the conditions of such protection orders, and protect victims' safety while in the workplace, should an offender act in violation of such order on Brown's premises. You may call Public Safety's Special Victims Unit for assistance. All information is kept confidential. Brown University will not penalize or discipline employees because they are, or have been victims of domestic violence. 


Related Information

Internal and external support services are available to employees who have been victims of workplace or domestic violence. The Brown University Department of Public Safety website, Workplace Safety Resources for Staff and Faculty, is an excellent starting point for more information. Other resources include:

Policy Owner

Approved By
Vice President for Human Resources
Contact Info
James Jackson Captain Department of Public Safety Email 401-863-3322

Policy Last Reviewed