We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more


Social Service Workplace Bullying

A Betrayal of Good Intentions

Kathryn Brohl

Publication Date - 01 July 2013

ISBN: 9780190615369

160 pages
6 x 9.1 inches


Bullying is a rising point of concern in our culture, but a less-recognized aspect of this issue is workplace bullying. Nearly 50 percent of the United States workforce has experienced or witnessed instances of bullying, according to the Workplace Bullying Institute. This sobering statistic includes social service workers whose careers focus on helping others.

Kathryn Brohl's Social Service Workplace Bullying: A Betrayal of Good Intentions pulls back the curtain on an unhealthy trend within the helping profession. This book, the first of its kind, is a practical guide for students and practitioners to help close the gap between social service workers and their professional ideals. It examines the ways social service organizations structurally perpetuate inappropriate behavior in the workplace and provides strategies to recognize, address, and resolve these behaviors. Brohl clearly defines workplace bullying, identifies its contributing factors, reveals common misperceptions about suitable behavior, and describes how these factors play into the organizational social service structure. This book informs readers about the dynamics of workplace bullying with the goal of helping to improve morale, increase productivity, and provide a safe workplace environment for all employees.


  • Case studies of social service workplace bullying
  • Current laws regarding workplace behavior
  • Principles and strategies for victims
  • Guidelines for gauging personal conduct and interactions

About the Author(s)

Kathryn Brohl (MA, Ohio State University; LMFT, Family Therapy Institute) has over thirty-five years of experience as an administrator, writer, psychotherapist, frontline worker, trainer, and consultant. She has written and implemented several start-up programs, including intensive outpatient and mental health programs and a substantial child welfare system. Brohl has published six books and has received special recognition for her commitment to the prevention of child abuse and neglect. She has worked with indigenous people on generational trauma and has trained professional and volunteer child and family advocacy staff throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia on trauma-informed care.

Table of Contents

    1 How Did We Get Here?
    2 Social Service Workplace Bullying: A Curious Irony
    3 Neighbors Living Worlds Apart: Bullies and Targets: Bullies
    4 The "Poster Gal" for Workplace Targets
    5 Neighbors Living Worlds Apart: Bullies and Targets: Targets
    6 The Fickle Value of Friendship: How Bystanders Function in the Workplace
    7 A Need and Good Intentions: A Brief History of Social Services in the United States
    8 Who's Driving the Bus? Bully Administrators in Social Services
    9 Beware of Charisma and Buzz: Social Structure Dysfunction
    10 Points of Change: Part I-Targets
    11 Points of Change: Part II-Repairing the Tear in Social Service Structures

Related Titles