Why Your Company Should Consider a Drug-free Work Program

Drug-free Work Program – Drug, alcohol abuse, and addiction is growing more and more common as the years go by, yet I still see more businesses and companies that do not enforce strict drug rules than companies that do.

Drug-free Work Program – This is silly to me, especially since employed individuals are actually more likely to be addicts than unemployed individuals are, as it is expensive to foster a drug or alcohol habit.

Drug-free Work Program

Image via Pixabay Drug-free Work Program

I cannot stress enough the importance of preventing substance abuse from entering your workforce. Drug addiction and substance abuse in general spreads and it spreads badly, and once you have co-workers who have drinking problems or who are abusing drugs then it is almost impossible to help them without firing them, and thereby making them look for new opportunities…or worse.

Regardless of the size of a business, it is still necessary for owners, managers and directors and really anyone at all in the business to be very, very aware of the effects of substance abuse at work. It’s a bad situation, and it will only get worse as the years go by.

The Facts and the Statistics – Drug-free Work Program

The statistics speak for themselves as far as how dangerous it is to have employees who abuse drugs and alcohol. It is quite obvious that drugs and alcohol can have a severe impact on how any business operates and functions when substance abuse is factored in. Here are some statistics to keep in mind:

  • In the U.S., the 2006 National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that nearly 75% of all illicit drug users were employed. Back then, this equated to a total of around 13.4 million people, which indicates that there was a fairly high chance of actually working with someone who abused drugs.
  • In the same study, it was found that around 80% of adult binge drinkers were employed in either full or part-time positions.
  • In Australia, the 2004 National Drug Strategy Household Survey found that 4.4% of all employees went to work affected by alcohol and around 2% went to work affected by illicit drugs. On top of that, 6% of survey participants stated that the workplace was where they typically consumed alcohol on a regular basis.
  • There was a no less than 300% jump in employees testing positive for prescription narcotics from 2005-2009. They tested positive whether they were prescribed them or not. A November 18, 2010 report by Quest Diagnostics also found that post-accident drug tests are no less than a full four-times more likely to find narcotics than pre-employment drug tests are, (the percentages are about 3.7% vs. 0.78%). Vicodin is the most frequently found narcotic prescription drug of abuse by far, but there are many other common ones too.
  • The impact of employee drug use in the nation today is quite severe to say the least. For example, workers who reported current illicit drug use were more likely to have worked for three or more employers in the past year and to have higher rates of unexcused absence and voluntary turnover in the past year than those who did not report drug use.

Still not clear? Here’s what I personally have noticed in workplaces that had substance abusers in them: Drug-free Work Program

  • Increased Rate of Absences by More than Fifty Percent
  • More Fatalities and Injuries on Site and Off Site for Employees
  • Loss of Productivity Amongst Workers, Targets not Being Met
  • Termination of Employment and a Fast Turn Around at the Business
  • Impaired Judgment and Decision-making, Poor Leadership and Management
  • Poor Team Morale and Staff Relations Within the Company
  • Unwanted Legal Complications Within the Company

These are just notes that I have taken, but I am sure the situation can be a lot worse than that and can carry with it far more problems and issues than the ones I’ve provided. I strongly encourage business owners and managers alike to make sure that they employ a very kind but very firm anti-drug policy in their own businesses. It may seem tough at first, but you will be happy you did it in the long run.

Per Wickstrom is the founder and CEO of Best Drug Rehabilitation, one of the top holistic rehabilitation centers in the country. He found sobriety after a decades-long struggle with addiction and has since dedicated his life and career to helping others find the same life-affirming success he has. For more information, check out Per’s blog or connect with him on Facebook or LinkedIn.