A large number of drug addicts are employed today and they are more vulnerable to accidents at workplace. According to Texas Business Today (2006), nearly 64% of all accidents were directly or indirectly related to drug abuse at workplace. Drug abuse at workplace is a serious issue. It impairs an employees judgment and coordination, which leads to increased risk of accidents, and reduced productivity.
Awareness programs and drug testing help in avoiding drug abuse at workplace. Increased awareness is key to drug free environment, which makes employees understand the magnitude of destruction caused due to drug abuse at workplace. Periodic drug abuse testing increases awareness levels. Drug tests detect the drug abusers and filters them from others employees. They also discourage and deter employees from drug abuse.
· Employers should stick to the fact that drug abuse affects performance at work.
· Explain the dangers of drug abuse at workplace to employees, even if they are not abusers.
· Create a drug free workplace policy and explain it to employees.
· Be supportive and try to resolve performance and personal problems by offering help.
· Impose penalties on employees for violating drug free workplace policy.
Coworkers are the first to notice problems. Encourage the employees to notify the drug abuse at work place to supervisors. Explain them that everybody is at risk because of others negligent actions.
The following types of drug tests can be performed on the employees to check drug abuse at workplace.
· Pre Employment Drug Testing: This test is used on job applicants. It prevents drug abusers from entering into the company.
· Post Accident Drug Testing: This test is implemented on an employee after an accident. It checks whether the employee was under the influence of drugs or not, at the time of accident. This test removes drug abusers from the workplace.
· Random Drug Testing: In this test, one or more employees are selected through a random process to take drug test. These tests discourage and deter employees from drug abuse.
Reasonable Suspicion Drug Testing: This test is conducted when an employee is suspected to be under the influence of drugs at workplace. They consistently provide positive results and enable employers to identify the drug addicts.
An employer cannot afford to ignore the employees poor performance due to drug abuse. It is important for an employer to test drug abuse at workplace consistently and conduct awareness programs to improve the productivity levels.