Jono: drugs & alcohol at work

Jono has started coming to work spaced out and the boss talks to HR advisors.

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When young people move to a new location for work, creating meaningful connections in their social lives can mean they are happier at work.

Australian workers admitted to taking almost 11.5 million sick days as a result of their alcohol and/or drug use.

Source: Alcohol and Drug Foundation (ADF)

1 in 10 workers say they have been affected by a co-worker's use of alcohol. For example, a reduced ability to do their own job, involvement in an accident or close-call, and having to work extra hours to cover for a co-worker.

Source: ADF

External assistance can bring new skills and a different perspective that your team may not have, and, employees may feel more comfortable speaking to someone outside their place of employment

Employers have a legal obligation to address alcohol and other drug issues in the workplace through the ‘duty of care’ provisions in the OHS Act 2011.

Source: ADF

Why is Jono's
story important?

Management is legally responsible for ensuring a safe workplace.
This is part of their duty of care to employees. Management can be held responsible for injury or death if an accident happens at work, particularly if they were already aware of impacting factors and didn't take action to rectify them.

Drugs and alcohol issues can be a sign of personal problems outside work.
Providing employee support is part of the Duty of Care.

Other workers want to see action taken when drug & alcohol issues present themselves.
They don’t want to see Management ignore issues.

What can you do?

If you are concerned a worker is drug effected, immediately take them off the job and provide external support through your local Drugs and Alcohol Counsellor service

Begin a performance management review with the employee of concern.

Create a comprehensive induction that includes a OH&S and Alcohol and Drugs policy.

Establish a procedure to schedule regular OH&S discussions with the team; monthly or at every team meeting and communicate the actions and outcomes to all staff.

Open up your communications with employees so that they feel safe to speak about what is going on in their personal lives. Encourage them to speak up and reassure them that you are here for support.

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