01 Jul The Importance of a Drug-Free Workplace
Establishing a drug-free workplace and developing a management practice can really help your business find and hold onto the right kind of employees, work ethic, morale, and provide the standard of customer service you find important. A drug-free workplace will be the most prepared for reducing accidents, lowering employee liability, decreasing customer-related accidents and risks, and prevent any damage to your company’s reputation.
Read on to learn more about what goes into making a workplace drug-free and why it’s important for all businesses who care about developing and maintaining a reputable, professional, and trustworthy presence in their industry.
What is a Drug-Free Workplace?
A drug-free workplace is one where employees are required to comply with a program and related policies and activities that are meant to provide a safe workplace, discourage drug and alcohol substance use disorders, and encourage the treatment and return of workers who have suffered from drug abuse. A drug-free workplace program is intended to educate employees on the issues involved with substance abuse, including the negative consequences that can affect a person’s health, home life, and career.
Why Should Employers Establish a Drug-Free Workplace Program?
Studies have found that nearly 80% of people suffering from illicit substance abuse hold full or part-time jobs. This means that they aren’t keeping their drug use separate from their work because drug abuse typically spreads into every aspect of a person’s life. As an employer, one or more of your employees may be taking illegal drugs, or abusing prescription drugs, and the only way you can help prevent drug use from affecting your business is to establish a drug-free workplace program. It doesn’t mean that you are suspecting or blaming any of your employees to be on drugs, but it is simply the most effective way to prevent drug-related consequences from happening, which may include accidents, higher medical claim expenses, loss of productivity, decreased profits, and a hostile working environment for your employees. Not only does establishing a drug-free workplace program benefit you as the employer, but it also benefits your employees by promising a safe, productive working environment where a positive atmosphere is a top priority.
What Goes into a Drug-Free Workplace Program?
There are companies who work with businesses to help establish what is considered to be a thorough drug-free workplace program. And components of the program typically involve a written policy, employee drug and alcohol education, supervisor training, and random drug testing. The drug-free workplace program was originally designed and promoted by national, state, and local organizations of business owners who wanted to make a drug-free working environment a known standard and expectation among workers. Some unions also adopted it and employed drug testing to ensure members helped contribute to a drug-free environment. Written policies help ensure that employees all are educated in the same understanding of their rights and responsibilities within the drug-free workplace program, including the right for fair treatment among all employees. Drug testing should be done randomly in the program to hold employees accountable for remaining drug-free, and ensuring that they cannot prepare for a drug test by stopping drug use for a screening, only to start back up again afterward. Comprehensive DOT-compliant drug and alcohol testing is incredibly effective at ensuring a drug-free workplace, and it a necessity for all workplaces where employees are hired to handle heavy machinery and vehicles.
Why Should You Require a Drug-Free Workplace?
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, about 21.5% of Americans aged 12 and older were classified as having a substance use disorder in 2014. This is a considerable amount of the overall population in this country and means that as a business owner, you can’t afford to neglect the facts on drug use. Protect your business, your customers, and your other employees by establishing a drug-free workplace and holding everyone to the same standards. Everyone will benefit and you’ll watch as the number of accidents decrease, productivity improves, and your profits increase.
Contact New Era Drug Testing and ask us about our drug-free workplace management and drug testing services. We will help you achieve the high standard you have for your business and employees.