Community response to disaster: the role of the workplace

Harv Rev Psychiatry. Jul-Aug 2004;12(4):229-37. doi: 10.1080/10673220490509624.


Disasters, natural and man-made, have a considerable impact on communities. Most recently, disasters stemming from terrorist attacks have become a leading cause of concern. The importance of work in the lives of employees, coupled with the vulnerability of workplaces as potential targets of terrorist attacks, suggests that workplaces can and should play a role in planning for, and responding to, disasters. This article addresses the role of the workplace in disasters, with an emphasis on the psychological impact of such events, by drawing upon experience and literature related to workplace violence and to other traumatic events in the workplace.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bioterrorism / economics
  • Bioterrorism / psychology
  • Community Health Services / organization & administration
  • Community Mental Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Community Networks / organization & administration
  • Disaster Planning*
  • Humans
  • Occupational Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Social Support
  • Terrorism / psychology*
  • Violence / psychology
  • Workplace / organization & administration*