On-the-Job Substance Abuse Among the American Workforce

In a nation with over 45 million people suffering from addiction or recovering from a substance abuse problem, using drugs and alcohol at work is more common than some people may realize.

Addiction Issues Don’t Take Breaks

The modern American workforce is one that is saddled with the effects of the opioid crisis, and where heavy drinking and marijuana use is the norm for many. When the frequent use of substances is part of a worker’s everyday life, being on the clock offers no exception.

The retail sector and the food and hospitality industry are two of the top job types that highly tested positive for drugs, with 5.3% of retail workers and 4.5% of food service employees testing positive, according to USA Today. Another industry, which tested at 4.7% positivity, is health care workers. On-the-job intoxication in this sector can endanger the lives of patients and vulnerable communities that require assistance.

The rise in workplace drug use can be attributed to more widespread addiction overall, but changes in employer policies may also be a factor: Businesses don’t issue mandatory drug test as often as they once did (except in highly dangerous roles, such as construction and driving), and more employees are able to use substances while working remotely. Marijuana legalization is another contributing factor.

The Impact of Drug and Alcohol Use at Work

Employee impairment at work leads to insufficient job performance, as well as a greater rate of accidents and injuries. And, such as in the case of the healthcare industry, patients, customers, clients, and other workers can suffer because of others’ addictions. From a financial perspective, the consequences of at-work substance use cost businesses over $81 billion annually.

Employers are beginning to respond to employee addiction in a much more productive way than in the past when workers could be fired for admitting they have a substance abuse problem. Now, companies are more open to the benefits of allowing their staff to address their addictions, with educational programs and time off allowed for recovery.

Contact Decision Point Center for Effective Addiction Treatment

If you are one of the millions of people in the United States struggling with addiction issues, help is available for you. At Decision Point Center, we provide a variety of comprehensive treatment programs for those in the pursuit of recovery.

Send us your information or call (844) 292-5010 if you are interested in learning more about Decision Point Center.