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In light of the bad economy, some analysts fear workplace bullying may be getting worse. Prior to the recession, most workers could leave if they were mistreated. Now, with an uncertain job market, workers may not have any choice but to stay put and tolerate the abuse.

Those who work with anti-bullying laws say persistence is needed, especially because state legislation is making headway slowly.

“We need to use stories like this one [in Miami] to educate employers about the human and organizational costs of workplace bullying,” said Mr. Yamada. “After all, what happened to Jonathan Martin is happening to many thousands of workers every day.”

Said Ms. Mattice, “My general advice would be not to have an anti-bullying policy, but instead to have a healthy workplace policy. So rather than telling employees what not to do, the policy is much more effective if you tell employees what to do.”