Substance Abuse in the Workplace

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Substance Abuse in the Workplace Substance abuse in the workplace is one of the top concerns in the United States today. “Studies show that 73 percent of drug users are employed, costing American businesses billions of dollars annually in lost production and staffing costs (Walsh).” “Due to higher employment rates and rising substance abuse, the chances that your organization employs one of these 8.1 million workers is greater today than it has been in the past several years (Walsh).” Studies also reveal that employees who abuse drugs have a tremendously harmful effect on the workplace. They are more likely to have extended absences from work, show up late, be involved in workplace accidents, and file workers compensation claims. Substance abuse includes anything from drug use, such as cocaine and heroin, to alcohol abuse. Before I start to discuss the various ways to get control of substance abuse I would like to give you a small background of the impact of substance abuse on the world today. The department of labor has gathered some of the following information and statistics to show the world how it is being affected: •Substance abuse in the workplace costs are estimated at $100 billion dollars annually. •Alcoholism causes 500 million lost work days each year. •Drug-using employees at GM average 40 days of sick leave each year compared to 4.5 days for non-users. •In Ohio substance abuse treatment has shown significant improvements: - 91% decrease in absenteeism. - 88% decrease in problems with supervisors. - 93% decrease in mistakes in work. - 97% decrease in on-the-job injuries. Page 2 As you can see substance abuse is a very ser... ... middle of paper ... ... the warning signs and implement a policy to attack the problem. Most likely it is going on right under your nose and you do not even know it. Take the time to step back and help your employees, the people that really make a difference to your company. You never know it might save you money. Bibliography: Works Cited Campbell, Reginald L. Substance Abuse in the Workplace. New York: Mcgraw Hill, 1990. Harris, Michael. Human Resource Managment: A practical Approach. New York: Dryden Press, 1997. Largent, Richard J. Preventing Substance Abuse in the Workplace. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1996. Loomis, Loyd. Drug Testing: A Workplace Guide to Designing Practical Policies. Chicago: BNA Plus, 1990. Walsh, Michael J. Drug and Alcohol Abuse in the Workplace. New York: Target Investment Inc., 1996.
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