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Under pressure even a decent boss can turn into a workplace bully. They use bullying as a misplaced coping strategy.

This may explain why Unite Union says it was flooded with calls from Christchurch workers in retail, fast-food, security and call centre industries who reported workplace bullying after the city was hit by two earthquakes.

A report on Radio New Zealand quoted union representative Matthew Jones who said reports of bullying increased from one or two cases a week to at least twelve and employers are not doing enough to train managers to handle the problem.

Canterbury Employers Chamber of Commerce chief executive Peter Townsend appears to agree with the coping strategy theory. He says there may have been bullying, but the issue is more to do with post-traumatic stress.

Workplace bullying is never good news and heaven knows the people of Christchurch have been through enough without having to deal with idiotic bullying bosses.