Alcohol and drug use among employees and their family members can be costly to a business. The workplace, however, can be a space to effectively address alcohol and other drug-related issues in an atmosphere that promotes health and wellness. By encouraging and supporting treatment, employers can dramatically assist in reducing the negative impact of alcohol and addiction in the workplace, while also reducing their costs.
To improve Nevada’s workplaces, Gov. Brian Sandoval has started a Recovery-Friendly Workplace Program to reduce the stigma of substance use and encourage workplaces to support treatment and recovery. This program encourages business owners to educate their staff and supervisors on substance use and recovery and to develop policies and procedures to support recovery of an employee or support them in caring for a family member in recovery. The program is designed to give business owners free resources, including training, draft policies, and technical assistance to become a recovery-friendly workplace.
Business Benefit to Being Recovery-Friendly
Preventing and addressing employee substance abuse can help businesses avoid or reduce the costs associated with the major problems caused by this issue (National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence):
- Premature death/fatal accidents
- Injuries/accident rates
- Absenteeism/extra sick leave
- Loss of production
Adopting a Recovery-Friendly Workplace culture also can help a business avoid becoming part of some other harmful statistics:
- Workers with alcohol problems were 2.7 times more likely than workers without drinking problems to have injury-related absences.
- A hospital emergency department study showed that 35 percent of patients with an occupational injury were at-risk drinkers.
- Breathalyzer tests detected alcohol in 16% of emergency room patients injured at work.
- Analyses of workplace fatalities showed that at least 11% of the victims had been drinking.
- Large federal surveys show that 24% of workers report drinking during the workday at least once in the past year.
- One-fifth of workers and managers across a wide range of industries and company sizes report that a coworker’s on- or off-the-job drinking jeopardized their own productivity and safety.
More About Being Recovery-Friendly