No employer wants a drug addict on their staff. Drug abuse destroys lives, finances, and companies. But what can employers do when an employee abusing drugs finally comes to light? The employer needs to deal with the situation properly and sensitively. But what do you say?
Drug testing is a big issue in today’s workplace. In Florida, it is illegal to test anyone for drug use unless they are in direct safety or financial danger, or their employment requires such a test. However, drug testing still happens, and employers are legally allowed to test employees for drugs.
Understandably, an employer will want to protect their company from drug issues. Unfortunately, however, there are growing concerns that employers are treating drug issues more harshly than they would be if, say, an employee had a bad driving history. Your employees are your most important asset, and if they’re showing up to work under the influence, that may not seem like such an asset anymore. Of course, if the company has pre employment screening procedure in place, they can easily avoid these issues. If not, it can strain the productivity of your other employees, who feel forced to cover for the employees who are under the influence. If an employee is caught using drugs or alcohol while on the clock, it’s likely he or she will run the risk of having their employment terminated, so it’s important to act fast.
How to Properly Handle an Employee Drug Issues
- Know your policy
Employers have a constant responsibility to provide a drug and alcohol-free workplace, so new employees should be well aware of this when you hire them. Whether you’re a small business or a large corporation, having a written drug and alcohol testing policy is essential to ensure your employees will be working in a safe, drug-free environment. Unfortunately, too many employers do not formally have a written policy, risking potential legal issues and unhappy employees.
- Check employee productivity
Businesses need to be vigilant about drug and alcohol use in the workplace. An employee who abuses drugs and alcohol on the job can seriously impact the company’s productivity, ability to retain current employees, and, ultimately, the company’s profitability. Employers need to implement the proper policies and practices that discourage and detect substance abuse in the workplace. You may wish to check KPIs, or however, it is your message to employee productivity, in order to see whether there are any anomalies amongst your workforce, as this could indicate that an employee is under some form of influence while working. Of course, it could be down to other personal circumstances, so it is important to communicate with employees and make sure that everything is ok in their lives before you jump to a substance abuse conclusion.
- Observe them, if appropriate
Drug abuse in the workplace is an unfortunately common issue. Many employers will find themselves facing employee drug abuse incidents at some point. Responsible employers will know how to handle these issues properly and prevent them from impacting the workplace and undermining productivity.
When it comes to drug abuse, employers have unique responsibilities when it comes to handling the situation. Once a workplace employee’s drug abuse becomes an issue, the next step is handling the situation. Unlike in other work settings, employees in law enforcement careers are required to observe any drug use, abuse, or possession, even if they’re off-duty.
- Have a meeting
Employee drug issues are a touchy subject, and there are several routes you can take before addressing the issue. First, document the issue. This includes any conversations and information any employee may have passed on to you that points to an employee drug issue. Second, meet with the employee in question to discuss the information. This means meeting the employee where they are, rather than at your office, and setting an objective and relatively neutral discussion. Finally, consider having a second party take notes. This not only ensures you do not forget anything, but it prevents the employee from attempting to sway the discussion in any way.
- Conduct a test
Drug testing is a legal issue and may depend on your company policy and legal advisors. If your policy allows for it, contact your drug test facility to notify it that you have an employee on the way for reasonable suspicion testing. Workplace drug testing is a hot topic for many employers, especially since today’s workplace is filled with a workforce that is concerned about their job security. Drug tests are becoming more common as a way to help protect employees, but drug tests are also becoming more common as a way to help employers protect their bottom line. It is, however, important to ensure that drug tests are conducted in an authentic manner. False accusations of drug consumption caused by human error during the test could result in the employee contacting someone like a fort worth drug crimes attorney. Of course, no one would like to be defamed and falsely accused of something that they have not done–they would do anything to prove themselves not guilty. So, be very cautious while conducting a test. Contact a lab that has a good reputation in this field.
- Decide after the result
Sometimes, drug and alcohol abuse can lead to serious consequences. Sometimes, they might already have enrolled in a drug and alcohol detox program and are still recovering probably. Now, what if your employee tests positive for substances like marijuana, cocaine, heroin, or other illegal substances? The consequences could be significant, including job loss, criminal charges, and other serious issues. The important thing to know is that proper handling of such cases can minimize the issues. For instance, if your employees are found to be consuming drugs, then as a responsible human being, it is crucial for you to guide them to the path of recovery. You can ask them to consult experts at Arista Recovery– a drug rehab near Mission Hills that can help detoxify the affected individuals. Here your employees can avail of medication-assisted treatments and addiction therapies to become sober again.
Anyway, remember that employee drug issues can be a significant problem in any company. Employers must be aware of their own policies and educate staff on how to handle drug issues both in the workplace and at home. Drug abuse and addiction are serious matters that can affect not only the addict but also those closest to them. It’s an issue that most employers take seriously. However, not all employers are equipped to recognize drug misuse, and employers should know how to handle employee drug issues properly to ensure minimum disruption to the overall business.