Drug and Alcohol Policies

Employers have a legal duty to protect employees health, safety and welfare.

Understanding the signs of drug and alcohol misuse (or abuse) will help you to manage
health and safety risk in your workplace, develop a policy to deal with drug and alcohol-related problems and support your employees.

What the issues are and what to look out for Misuse is not the same thing as dependence.  Drug and alcohol misuse is the use of illegal drugs and misuse of alcohol, medicines and substances such as solvents.

Consider these warning signs, which could indicate drug or alcohol misuse:

unexplained or frequent absences a change in behaviour unexplained dips in productivity more
accidents or near-misses performance or conduct issues

These can also be signs of other things, like stress or illness.

You must consult employees or their representatives on health and safety matters. Consultation involves you not only giving information to
employees but also listening to them and taking account of what they say.

You could ask your employees what they know about the effects of drugs and alcohol on health and
safety and the restrictions or rules on drug and alcohol use in your business.

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