NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

What Are the Safest and Riskiest Jobs?

December 21, 2001

As one might expect, police officers nationwide were targets of workplace violence more often than workers in any other profession between 1993 and 1999, according to the Justice Departments' Bureau of Justice Statistics.

  • They were followed by corrections officers, taxi drivers and bartenders, the bureau reported yesterday.
  • The safest occupations were college teachers, physicians and nurses.
  • Overall, violent incidents in the workplace affected 12.6 out of every 1,000 workers over the period -- between the rates for college teachers and physicians.
  • Between 1993 and 1999, the annual average of non-fatal, violent workplace incidents was 1.7 million -- as well as 900 workplace-related homicides.

Workplace violence accounted for 18 percent of all violent crime over the period. However, incidents at the workplace declined 44 percent over the 1993-1999 period.

Government employees had violent victimization rates -- 28.6 per 1,000 -- that were much higher than those who worked for private companies. The rate was 9.9 per 1,000 private-company employees -- and 7.4 per 1,000 among the self-employed.

Source: Jerry Seper, "Police See Most On-Job Violence, Report Says," Washington Times, December 21, 2001; based on Detis T. Duhart, "Violence in the Workplace, 1993-99" (NCJ-190076) December 2001, BJS special report, Bureau of Justice Statistics.


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