Employers have a responsibility to ensure the health and safety of their staff, and a good employer will also want to assist any employees who have a drug or alcohol issue. Does your organisation have a current drugs and alcohol policy to support you manage this issue?
Many employers see drug use as a matter for the law, and alcohol use is often considered a personal matter, unless the use starts to become disruptive. Negotiating an agreed policy recognises these issues as legitimate workplace matters, whilst supporting the workforce. A drugs or alcohol policy should not be part of a disciplinary policy.
A holistic drug and alcohol policy is likely to positively impact on health and well-being, increasing business effectiveness by:
- Reducing levels of absenteeism
- Increasing productivity
- Preventing the early loss of skilled employees due to chronic ill health
Appendix 3 of the CIPD Guide for people management professionals contains a model policy: http://www.cipd.co.uk/NR/rdonlyres/EFE87A7D-B088-43C0-A0B5-B6F71DA1E678/0/mandrgalcmisuseg.PDF
The London Drugs Forum has published guidelines and a checklist for businesses wishing to draw a new policy: http://www.cityoflondon.gov.uk/services/adult-health-wellbeing-and-social-care/drugs-and-alcohol/london-drug-and-alcohol-policy-forum/Documents/tackling-alcohol-and-drugs-in-the-workplace_03-2014.pdf
The ACAS ‘Health, Work and Wellbeing Guide on pages 26 and 27 offers a checklist of items to consider when drawing up a policy on drug and alcohol at work.: http://www.acas.org.uk/media/pdf/3/t/Health-work-and-wellbeing-accessible-version.pdf
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has developed some guidance regarding how employers can deal with drug use: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg91.pdf
The TUC guidance to assist workplace representatives in developing policies is found here: https://www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/drugsalcoholinworkplace.pdf
The BMA has written a short guide aimed at occupational health staff to help them understand and support working patients and employers to address alcohol and illicit drug use by people that work. http://bma.org.uk/practical-support-at-work/occupational-health/alcohol-dru…