Managing Drug and Alcohol Misuse at Work: What You Can Do to Keep Your Employees Safe

What is the current drug and alcohol misuse at work prevalence in the UK?

According to research, 60% of poor performance and 40% of all accidents at the workplace occur as a result of substance abuse. Each year, 3 million individuals come to work under the influence of narcotics, opiates, and others and about 24% of the workers have drunk alcohol during work hours. When interviewed, 1 in 10 small business employers admit to having experienced an employee under the effect of drugs at the workplace.

The dangers of substance misuse at work:

The abovementioned numbers can seem quite worrisome indeed, especially if one considers all the risks involved in substance misuse at the workplace. Individuals who abuse drugs or alcohol are far more likely to hurt themselves or their colleagues, are far less productive and use three times as many sick days. Substance abuse can lead to poor decision making, theft and increased probability of conflicts with co-workers and supervisors. The costs that UK businesses experience are estimated at £21 billion lost to alcohol abuse and £15 billion to drug abuse, with £7.3 billion lost yearly due to lack of productivity as a result of misuse of alcohol.

What are the signs that you should look out for?

Considering the circumstances outlined above, it becomes clear that being aware of the signs that might indicate substance abuse as an employer is important. Here are some symptoms that can suggest an issue of that nature might be present:

  • Poor personal hygiene
  • Impacted mobility and/or awareness
  • Significant fluctuations in mood, energy, and ability for concentration
  • Distorted hearing, vision, or speech
  • Slower reaction times
  • Low productivity
  • Dishonesty

What you can do as an employer: drug and alcohol testing

To minimize the dangerous (and costly) occurrences associated with drug and alcohol abuse at work, employers must be proactive and prepared. This can be done by developing a Drug and Alcohol policy and introducing drug and alcohol testing at the workplace. Doing this can provide a number of benefits, the most important of which is, of course, ensuring the safety of your employees. Furthermore, it improves productivity, reducing the costs resulting from lower output or quality. It also minimizes the number of workers’ compensation claims that can be made against your company, helping you to make sure that accidents that can be avoided, will be. Last but not least, testing can help indicate substance abuse in its early stages, giving you a chance to provide your employees with the resources and support needed to help them overcome their addiction issues. In this way, testing proves beneficial for employers and their workforce alike.

Don’t delay action: take the necessary steps now!

How can you make sure you are prepared to effectively test your workforce and ensure safety at the workplace? Book your drug and alcohol training course with Meduc8tion! We will make sure that upon completion of the course, you have the ability to detect signs and symptoms of substance abuse, recognise patterns of behaviour that might indicate such an issue is present, and test your employees to ensure safety either randomly or with-cause. We will also prepare you for the next steps that would need to be undertaken in case there is a positive test result. After finishing the course, you will receive your certification vie email within the next 24 hours and will be ready to start taking the necessary steps towards a safe, alcohol and drug-free work environment.

When it comes to being proactive in ensuring the health and safety of your employees, there is no better time than now! Wait no longer and book your drug and alcohol training course with us today.

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