Kansas Democratic Representatives this week introduced a proposal to reduce workplace bullying, noting that it is increasingly being recognized as a major workplace issue.

According to a 2014 survey, 27 percent of workers nationwide reported current or past experience with abusive conduct at work and 72 percent of employers “deny, discount, encourage, rationalize or defend it.”

Threatening, intimidating

Workplace bulling is defined as abusive conduct which is “threatening, humiliating, or intimidating,” according to the Workplace Bullying Institute. It may involve interference — such as sabotage — which prevents work from getting done, or verbal abuse.

The Institute says it is driven by perpetrators' need to control the targeted individual or individuals.

Liability protection

The bill, which would protect Kansas from any potential liability, was among a dozen the lawmakers introduced to benefit the state’s workers.

"What we've outlined here today are a concrete proposals that will benefit working men and women in the middle class of our state," Representative Jim Ward said. "Give them a hand up instead of them always being asked to add a little more to the tax treasury. And so these don't cost any money."