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Drugs in the workplace

Key reading:

Pathways to employment in London: A guide for drug and alcohol services

Simonson P., LDAN/DrugScope, 2010
Many drug and alcohol services in London are working with training and employment support services to create positive pathways to employment for their service users. However, to date this work has not been significantly highlighted or promoted within London. LDAN has been funded by the Trust for London over two years to identify and collate good practice, to start building an evidence base on what works in employment support for people with drug and alcohol problems. This report brings together our research work so far. The report is structured into a review of current issues and evidence, followed by a range of resources including a directory of employment support providers for drug and alcohol service users in London. Also included is a list of all Job Centre Plus District Partnership Managers. This is the first report and directory of this kind for London.
Download: Full report (PDF 1MB)

The other half of the equation: employers' readiness to recruit problem drug users

Singleton N., Lynam B. Drugs & Alcohol Today, 9(1), 2009.
The importance of employment as part of the recovery process for problem drug users has been increasingly recognised and the UK government is developing policies to encourage drug users on out-of-work benefits to engage with treatment and find work. There is slim evidence to support the use of welfare benefit sanctions for this group, although the government is committed to piloting such programmes and fully evaluating before any national roll-out. However, more attention needs to be given to addressing employers’ concerns about risks associated with hiring recovering drug users and challenging negative stereotypes and stigma if ambitions to get this group back to work are to be realised.

Impact of alcohol problems on the workplace

Alcohol Concern, 2006
This article looks at the evidence of prevalence of alcohol problems in the workplace and the level of harm it causes. It examines the underlying risk factors for problem drinking at work and looks at a variety of approaches that have been taken to tackle this problem.
Web: (PDF)

Achieving smoke freedom toolkit

A joint production between the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) and Action on Smoking and Health, (ASH), 2005
This guide is intended to help local decision makers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and particularly Councillors and Council Officers, to frame tobacco control policies for their areas within existing legislation. The toolkit contains the latest expert advice on key issues including the law relating to secondhand tobacco pollution and the case for making use of the control measures currently available, as well as examples of action already being taken by local authorities throughout England and Wales. We have been particularly pleased to include material from the Irish Republic, and we take this opportunity to congratulate them on the clear and comprehensive measures they have taken, which by all reports have been both effective and well received.
(PDF 1.4MB)

Guidelines on developing and implementing workplace drugs and alcohol policies

Health and Safety Executive, Northern Ireland. 2004.
This aim of these guidelines is to: prevent drug and alcohol problems affecting the workplace through awareness raising; identify problems at the earliest stage; protect the health, safety and welfare of employees by offering support to those who have a problem. The guidelines extend to alcohol, illicit drugs and ‘over the counter’ or prescription medication which may be abused. Volatile substances such as solvents are also included. They do not extend to tobacco.
Download: Full report (PDF 230KB)

Drug testing in the workplace: summary conclusions of the Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work

Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work , 2004.
This is a summary of the findings of the Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work.
Download: Report summary (PDF 141KB)

Drug testing in the workplace: the report of the Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work. Full document

Independent Inquiry Into Drug Testing Testing at Work, 2004.
Drawing on evidence from a wide range of professionals and experts, this report examines: the context for today’s debate about workplace testing; the business case for testing; the scientific, legal, ethical, social, economic and cultural dimensions; and the growth and development of testing in the UK.
Download: Full report (PDF 433KB)

Drug Tests

Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology. POST, 2004.
This briefing looks at the prevalence of drug use, the types of test currently available and their reliability, the extent of their use, and examines the issues that arise.
Download: Post note (PDF 144KB)

Drug Testing at Work: Legal and Ethical Issues

Simon Deakin, 2004.
The purpose of this note is to describe some of the findings to date on the nature and extent of employment-related drug testing in the UK, and to outline some of the legal issues which arise. It also points the way to possible solutions to the legal uncertainty which currently affects this area. The note is intended to serve as background material for a round table discussion which will take place at the Industrial Law Society’s Annual Conference on 12 September 2003.
Download: Full report (PDF 292KB)

Results of the CBI Survey for the Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work

Drug Testing at Work - CBI Survey into attitudes, prevalence and format of drug testing among a selection of companies.
Download: Survey results (PDF 154KB)

Indepent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work. Advice

Michael Ford, 2003.
This Advice, provided for the Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing, deals with the law on drug testing of workers.
Download: Full report (PDF 343KB)

Literature Review for the Independent Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work

Ross Coomber, 2003.
This paper will seek to provide an overview of current issues concerning the use, perceived benefits and efficacy of the use of drug testing programmes in the workplace.
Download: Literature review (PDF 380KB)

Drug Testing at Work. MORI top-line results

Mori, 2003.
Presents results from MORI, the independent research organsiation, into employers attitudes to alhol and drug testing in the workplace. This fieldwork took place between 16th - 25th April, 2003 and is based on responses from 204 UK businesses. Questionnaire included.
Download: Results (PDF 478KB)

Drunk or disordered: A TUC guide to tackling alcohol and drugs at work

TUC, 2001.
Drink and drug related problems are one of the commonest causes of sickness absence, yet a large number of organisations do not have a drug and alcohol policy. Substance misusers jeopardize their own health and can affect the safety of colleagues. This guide shows how proper policies to deal with the effects of substance misuse, and constructive procedures for supporting victims, can achieve far more than testing programmes alone.
Price: £15.00