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Eliminating Opioids in An Opioid Crisis

Eliminating Opioids

The American workplace is currently fighting a raging war and that war is with opioids. The current opioid epidemic that we are seeing in American society extends to every aspect of life and that includes the workplace. Employers play a major role when it comes to eliminating this issue, and it all starts with creating relationships with employees. By putting in place the necessary precautions in place, the workplace can remain a safe environment for everyone to be in.

One of the causing factors that have allowed this epidemic to reach such a high level is that many employers do not have a policy in place to counteract it, such as drug testing. Before moving a potential candidate into the workplace, employers should be prepared to administer a drug test to ensure that they are not allowing employees that will be working under the influence into their work environment. Workspaces that are not monitoring their employee’s drug use could potentially be allowing a greater amount of risk to the entire workplace. All this can easily be avoided, and opioids could remain outside of these spaces if employers would just take the necessary steps.

Now, what if an employee starts to abuse opioids after they have been with a certain employee for years? After they have passed the initial drug testing process when they were hired? This is where a great relationship with your employees comes into play. By knowing the people who are in your work environment and having an open relationship with them, you will be able to communicate at a level where both parties can be transparent with one another. As an employer, you should view your employees more than just people that work for you. You must develop a working relationship with them so that they will want to do more than just receive a paycheck from you. You want your employees to care about your business and what they do. It all starts with a relationship.

Another great way to keep opioid abuse, or any drug abuse for that matter, out of the workplace is by educating your entire workforce on it. By allowing an open line of communication with your employees and allowing them to ask questions about addiction/drug abuse, they will have a better understanding of the harm it can do. If an employee has an injury that requires pain medication, monitor their behavior after the injury. When you have worked with an employee long enough, you will know who they are and if you see anything out of character, you should have a conversation with them.  The harm that opioids can bring goes well beyond just the workplace, but it can also affect their personal and financial lives as well. It is an employer’s job to ensure that his employees are not only safe in the workplace but also, living a healthy lifestyle. Keeping opioids out of the workplace is more than just simply drug testing, it requires being involved in the culture of the workplace.

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