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Title: BLR


1
BLRs Human Resources Training Presentations in
Texas
  • Substance Abuse in the Workplace

2
Goals
  • Understand that substance abuse is a major
    problem in the workplace
  • Recognize the signs of substance abuse
  • Know how to deal with abuse problems effectively
    to assist employees while protecting the
    interests of co-workers and the company
  • Understand Texas laws governing substance abuse

3
The Scope of the Problem
  • Substance abuse is one of the most serious
    problems facing employers
  • 10 percent of workers have a problem
  • Most substance abusers are employed
  • Anyone can be a substance abuser

4
The Cost of Substance Abuse
  • Substance abuse costs over 50 billion annually
  • Substance abusers are less productive, lose more
    time from work, and have more accidents
  • 40 percent of industrial fatalities are linked
    to substance abuse
  • 47 percent of all occupational accidents can be
    attributed to substance abuse
  • Substance abuse also leads to theft and crime in
    the workplace

5
Drug-Free Workplace Act
  • Written policy
  • Awareness program
  • Reporting requirements
  • Disciplinary action
  • Rehabilitation

6
Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988
  • Requires
  • Notification to employees about policy
  • Establishment of drug-free awareness program
  • Copy to all employees
  • Penalties imposed

7
You Play a Key Role
  • Promote awareness of the problem
  • Communicate company policy about substance abuse
    in the workplace
  • Monitor employee performance
  • Refer abusers to professionals for assistance
  • Administer appropriate discipline

8
Confidentiality
  • Employee privacy requirements
  • People in the information loop
  • Beneficial effects of confidentiality

9
Documentation
  • Documenting performance
  • Recording on-the-job incidents
  • Recognizing patterns of behavior
  • Increasing the possibility of early intervention
  • Keeping a record of supporting actions and
    recommendations

10
Detecting Substance Abuse
  • Abuse may not be obvious
  • Abusers try to hide their problem
  • Co-workers may be reluctant to speak up
  • Family and friends may be involved in secrecy
    and denial
  • Performance monitoring is the key to detection

11
Alcohol Abuse
  • Why people abuse alcohol
  • Profile of an alcoholic
  • Alcoholic progression

12
Early Warning Signs of Alcohol Problems
  • Inexplicable fall-off of work efficiency
  • Frequent tardiness
  • Excessive use of sick days
  • Sudden decisions to use vacation time
  • Involvement in accidents, near misses, and
    errors

13
Other Early Warning Signs of Alcohol Problems
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Facial changes
  • Mental slowdown
  • Heavy use of breath sweeteners

14
Impairment in Social Functioning
  • Low tolerance for frustration
  • Impulsiveness
  • Know it all attitude
  • Anxiety
  • Oversensitivity

15
Impairment in Social Functioning (cont.)
  • Isolation
  • Defiance
  • Mood swings
  • Rationalization
  • Dependency

16
Drug Abuse
  • Profile of a drug abuser
  • Forms of drug abuse
  • Safety concerns
  • Quality and productivity concerns

17
Early Warning Signs of Drug Abuse
  • Otherwise inexplicable changes in performance
  • Excessive tardiness and absenteeism
  • Increased number of accidents or near misses
  • Changes in appearance
  • Attitudinal extremes

18
Early Warning Signs of Drug Abuse (cont.)
  • Mood swings
  • False confidence
  • Mental slowdown
  • Secrecy

19
Common Drugs in the Workplace
  • Marijuana
  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • Amphetamines (aka speed or uppers)
  • Prescription drugs

20
Be Prepared to Act if You Suspect Substance Abuse
  • Never ignore a problem
  • Talk to the employee privately
  • Give the employee an opportunity to respond
  • Alert the employee to programs within and outside
    the organization that can help
  • Emphasize that employee must meet established
    standards
  • Monitor employees performance and behavior

21
How to Handle a Substance Abuse Crisis
  • Signs of a crisis
  • Call in your manager or another supervisor
  • Quietly remove the employee
  • Recommend a medical evaluation
  • If the employee refuses medical evaluation
  • Document the incident

22
Substance Abuse Checklist
  • 1. Are you familiar with the companys policies
    regarding the use, possession, or sale of drugs
    or alcohol on the premises? YES NO
  • 2. Are you familiar with the terms and
    require- ments of the Drug-Free Workplace Act?
    Does it apply to your company? Have
    you fulfilled your responsibilities in the
    mandated drug-free awareness program? YES NO
  • 3. Do you remind your employees about company
    policy on a regular basis (at least once a
    month)? YES NO

23
Substance Abuse Checklist (cont.)
  • 4. Do you distribute and post information about
    substance abuse as requested by HR? YES NO
  • 5. Do you know how and to whom to refer
    employees with substance abuse problems? YES
    NO
  • 6. Do you know what to do in an alcohol- or
    drug-related emergency? YES NO
  • 7. Are you familiar with the symptoms of alcohol
    abuse? YES NO

24
Substance Abuse Checklist (cont.)
  • 8. Are you familiar with the symptoms of drug
    abuse? YES NO
  • 9. Are you aware of the people in your
    depart- ment who are taking prescription drugs
    that might affect their performance? YES NO
  • 10. Do you document incidents that might be
    alcohol- or drug-related, including date, time,
    and witnesses? YES NO

25
Substance Abuse Checklist (cont.)
  • 11. Do you have those involved in these
    incidents attest to your reports? YES NO
  • 12. Do you maintain confidentiality in your
    handling of suspected substance abuse problems
    (except as required by the reporting
    requirements of the law and company policy)? YES
    NO

26
Substance Abuse and Texas Employment Laws
  • Texas Commission on Human Rights Act
  • ADA
  • Workers Compensation

27
Drug-Free Workplace Policy
  • Employers covered
  • Written substance abuse policy
  • Intoxication defined
  • Drug testing and rehabilitation not required

28
Drug Testing in Texas
  • No comprehensive drug-testing law
  • Drug testing and workers compensation
  • Refusal to submit to drug test
  • Preemployment drug screening

29
Small Business Administration Grants
  • Drug-free workplace demonstration program
  • Assistance for small businesses in Texas
  • Qualifications of consultants
  • Program requirements

30
Goals
  • Understand that substance abuse is a major
    problem in the workplace
  • Recognize the signs of substance abuse
  • Know how to deal with abuse problems effectively
    to assist employees while protecting the
    interests of co-workers and the company
  • Understand Texas laws governing substance abuse

31
Summary
  • Substance abuse is a growing problem that
    threatens the safety, security, and prosperity
    of our company and our employees
  • Employees with substance abuse problems may
    become safety and/or performance problems
  • Texas employers must take appropriate measures to
    deal with substance abuse

32
Summary (cont.)
  • You play an important role in detecting the
    signs of substance abuse, documenting problem
    behavior, and helping employees get professional
    assistance
  • You can never afford to ignore a suspected
    substance abuse problem
  • Take appropriate action quickly so employees can
    get the help they need, and you can maintain the
    safety and productivity of your company

33
Quiz
  • 1. Two of the most common signs of substance
    abuse are frequent ________ and _______.
  • 2. Most substance abusers are unemployed. True
    or False
  • 3. As many as ____ percent of American workers
    have a substance abuse problem.

34
Quiz (cont.)
  • 4. Your role in managing workplace substance
    abuse includes ___________, ___________,
    _____________, _____________, and _____________.
  • 5. Employee privacy laws require you to keep
    information about an employees substance abuse
    confidential, except for talking to your manager
    and the healthcare professionals involved in
    treating the employee. True or False

35
Quiz (cont.)
  • 6. Detecting substance abuse is often difficult
    because _______________.
  • 7. When you suspect a substance abuse problem
    based on performance or one of the other warning
    signs, you should take swift action, including
    _____________, _____________, ____________,
    _____________, and _____________.

36
Quiz (cont.)
  • 8. In a crisis situation where an employee
    appears to be under the influence and may be
    endangering himself/herself and other employees,
    you should contact your manager immediately and
    quietly remove the employee from the work area.
    True or False
  • 9. List three warning signs of substance abuse
    that might apply to either employees with an
    alcohol problem or employees with a drug problem.
    ____________ , ____________, ____________

37
Quiz (cont.)
  • 10. Substance abusers frequently blame others
    for their mistakes. True or False

38
Quiz Answers
  • 1. Two of the most common signs of substance
    abuse are frequent tardiness and absenteeism.
  • 2. False. Most substance abusers are employed.
  • 3. As many as 10 percent of American workers
    reportedly have a substance abuse problem and
    this figure is probably on the low side.

39
Quiz Answers (cont.)
  • 4. Your role in managing workplace substance
    abuse includes promoting awareness of the
    problem, communicating company policy concerning
    substance abuse, monitoring employee performance,
    referring abusers to professionals for
    assistance, and administering discipline when
    necessary.
  • 5. True. Confidentiality is absolutely required.

40
Quiz Answers (cont.)
  • 6. Detecting substance abuse is often difficult
    because most abusers try to hide their problem.
  • 7. When you suspect a substance abuse problem,
    you should talk to the employee privately, give
    the employee an opportunity to respond, alert
    the employee to programs within and outside the
    organization that can help, emphasize that the
    employee must meet established standards, and
    monitor the employees performance and behavior
    carefully.

41
Quiz Answers (cont.)
  • 8. True. You should get your manager or another
    supervisor to observe the employee, and if you
    both agree that the employee is under the
    influence and poses a danger, remove the employee
    quietly but immediately from the work area.

42
Quiz Answers (cont.)
  • 9. Substance abusers often exhibit (1) weight
    loss (2) facial changes, such as poor skin tone
    and unhealthy color and (3) mental slowdown in
    which normally sharp individuals have difficulty
    grasping simple facts, responding intelligently,
    and communicating clearly.
  • 10. True. Substance abusers tend to rationalize
    their problems by blaming others for their
    mistakes and misfortunes.
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