Signs That Drug Addiction Is Occurring In Your Workplace

Have you noticed a reduction in productivity in your workplace? Is the rate of absenteeism or injuries slightly higher? Between 10 percent and 20 percent of accident-related deaths on the job include drug or alcohol use as a contributing factor. As a manager or business owner, you have an obligation to keep your workplace safe and attend to the well-being of your staff.

If you suspect that one of more of your employees is struggling with substance dependency, here’s how to tell and what you can do about it.


Signs That Someone Close to You May Have a Drug or Alcohol Problem

People who are in the midst of drug or alcohol dependency often feel that they have it all under control. They may even succeed in disguising the problem for a while. However, as the substance use progresses, signs will begin to appear.

One or two of these issues could be tied to other problems, but if you’re noticing an overall pattern, it may be time to act.

  • Work performance is suffering
  • Job hops or has a spotty employment record
  • Calls out sick a lot or frequently tardy
  • Has trouble staying productive or remaining on-task
  • Volatile temper or erratic behavior


Drug Intervention and Education in the Workplace

If an employee has reached the point where they’re a danger in the workplace, your options are either to fire them or to offer them a leave of absence to get help. The best thing to do before it gets to that point is to institute workplace drug intervention and education programs. Such a program will boost overall morale and company cohesion, and it may help employees who are struggle with addiction issues to realize they need treatment.

An effective Employee Awareness Program (EAP) begins with a clear set of rules and expectations for participation. Your program can be devised in cooperation with your HR department, or you can bring in a outside agency. Successful drug abuse awareness and prevention might include:

  • Drug and alcohol awareness day
  • Educational materials about substance abuse
  • Video training regarding drug use on the job

When someone is habitually intoxicated or suffering the after-effects of drug or alcohol abuse, it puts them and other employees in danger. Such behavior can also affect your money, company morale, and may cause your insurance rates to increase. Most health care plans will pay for substance abuse treatment. Show your troubled team member how much you care about their welfare by having an honest, confidential dialogue and help them get the treatment they need.