Alcoholism in the workplace has long been a major safety concern. But other addictions, drugs, and mind-altering medications have become important factors. Threatening the safety of workers, and heavy drug users in the workplace. Employment is no longer a marginal phenomenon. Addiction has become an important occupational safety problem alcohol and drugs.
how alcohol and drugs are harmful for health for us:
Physical problems (decreased concentration, mental absence, loss of balance, visual disturbances, etc.). Are combined with relational and behavioral symptoms (irresponsible gestures. unpredictable reactions, aggressiveness or apathy, etc.). Which leads to more frequent involvement of these workers in industrial accidents. The consumption of drugs at work or when their effects prolong in the workplace. Calls into question the co-responsibility of the employer with regard to safety.
While all companies affect these addictions safety at work. and prevention of occupational risks, certain sectors or professions are particularly. affected by this risk transport company, driving machines. working at heights, work on machine tools. A preventive drug policy makes it possible to expect the problems of addictions. At work or at least prevent these problems from worsening.
Alcohol and drugs:
The problem is but complex because addiction is an addiction. Which characterize the repeated inability to control behavior. Despite knowledge of its negative consequences since individual knowledge. The risk is not enough to change addictive driving behavior. It is the entire workgroup that must involve in the action. And prevention of risks associated with addictions.
The aim is not to confront the worker with the very consumption of drugs. Which interpret as an interference in his private life. But with the consequences that this consumption can have. In the work situation, on himself. , his colleagues, the company’s customers, and the whole community. The only area that concerns the right to the exercise of authority by the employer alcohol and drugs.
use of narcotics:
The use of narcotics (cannabis, cocaine, amphetamines,) is prohibited by law. In the Labor Code, there is so no specific article dealing with their use. Unlike the Highway Code which provides for severe penalties for users.
All these narcotics having effects on vigilance or on risk assessment, nothing prevents. The company manager from inserting articles in the internal regulations on the introduction. Of consumption of these substances.
The introduction and consumption of drugs in the workplace can then justify. Dismissal for serious misconduct for workers using dangerous machines, processes. Or chemicals or driving vehicles, and who have been the subject of warnings. Prerequisites in this area.
The main risks of addictions at work:
The consumption of products that have an influence on the psyche harms adaptation to reality by altering attention and memory, reaction times … is psychopharmacology (analgesics, anxiolytics, sleeping pills, antidepressants). And illegal drugs (cannabis, cocaine, hallucinogens, opiates, amphetamines).
According to the French Observatory for Drugs and Drug Addiction. 3.8 million People consume psychotropic drugs and 1.2 million cannabis (10 or more uses per month). As the effects remain several hours or even days after consumption. It results that many workers are under the influence of these products. In their workplace either by abuse or misuse of their normal use. Psychotropic drugs or by more or less pronounced dependence on drugs.
Drug in employees:
The consumption of drugs does not lead to a generalized dysfunction of individuals. Excluding them from a job and it estimates that approximately 10% of the employees of a company. Would experience a problem related to the consumption of drugs or psychotropic drugs.
The effects of these substances are variable depending on the drug or drug class. But there are recurring behavioral, cognitive, and physiological phenomena such as decreased vigilance. Impaired judgment skills, memory disorders, motor skills, vision, and reflexes. The effects of these substances combined with those of concomitant alcohol consumption increase. Which can lead to acts of violence alcohol and drugs.
Among the drugs most encountered in the workplace, cannabis, cocaine. And ecstasy is at the forefront of safety concerns. These drugs cause euphoria leading to loss of contact. With reality visual and hearing sensory disturbances. Going as far as hallucinations and delusional attitudes, disinhibiting logorrhea. Loss of the feeling of fatigue, and increased self. Esteem promoting dangerous actions and risky behavior. Medications of inappropriate use such as anxiolytics, sleeping pills. Antidepressants lead to disinvestment and impaired professional results, drowsiness, fatigue. Memory loss, mental absence, difficulty concentrating, reduced manual dexterity, and cognitive functions.
Workplace addiction prevention measures:
Faced with the consumption of narcotic products and any addictive behavior. In the professional context which endangers the employee. And the workers of the company the employer needs to react as for any risk of another nature. With the same rules governing health and safety at work. The consumption of narcotic products by employees is, for certain workstations. Particularly those of driving vehicles or machinery, an aggravating factor of professional risk. That the employer must take into account his safety obligations. In particular in the single occupational risk assessment document alcohol and drugs.
There is so a co-responsibility between the employer. And the employee for the effectiveness. And preventive management of addictive behavior. The shared responsibility is due to the fact that the employer is subject to an obligation to result. In the safety of his employees or damage that his employees may cause. To third parties, and in the event of a serious breach of this obligation. He may sue for inexcusable misconduct during industrial accidents.
Primary prevention seeks to avoid addictive behavior through internal regulation. Training and information, while secondary prevention will focus on detecting. And detecting addictive behavior by identifying symptoms of a physical relational. And behavioral nature to avoid aggravation and tertiary prevention. Will check and assist the employee in dealing with his dependency.
Preventive measures cannot fix only at the level of the organization as a whole. Since the risks are very different according to the workstations. And the employer must take into account the nature of the activities. And the specific risks associated with them. Specific risks to certain groups of workers. In particular with regard to screening tests.
Finally, as a last resort and after written warnings, the company manager has the right to dismiss. An employee with addictive behavior for serious misconduct. If the internal regulations have set the rules under the terms allowing. The employee to challenge and if his conduct exposes people to an identified. Serious danger prevents or puts an immediate end to this dangerous situation.
Mandatory in companies or establishments where at least twenty employees are usually employed. Internal regulations are the document in which the employer sets. The measures for applying the health and safety regulations. It is a valuable tool which, based on articles of the Labor Code and case law. Will allow the establishment of a real “illegal product regulation” for the company. Recalling at least the legal prohibition of the use of narcotics in the company. Specifying the verification modalities and fixing the disciplinary sanctions incurred. In the event of a violation of the provisions relating to narcotics. The provisions on health and safety apply to all persons working in the company. Whether they are bound by an employment contract.
It is subject to the opinion of the works council (CE) and the health. Safety, and working conditions committee (CHSCT) or staff representatives. And forward to the labor inspector. The employer can thus set both the rules, procedures. And procedures to follow in the event of incapacity for work. Due to addictive behavior as well as the rules for preventive tests. The provisions on the control of the use of narcotics must include therein. So that the information of the employees specifies the role of the hierarchy. As well as the list of safety or security work concerned. During an abnormal behavior to put an end to a dangerous situation.
Freedom of employees:
But, care must take to ensure that the regulations do not contain. Unjustified clauses limiting the individual freedom of employees. Such as provisions authorizing body searches. As well as their graduation alcohol and drugs.
Although not compulsory for the category of establishment with less than 20 employees. A simple internal regulation can fix the preventive policy in the field of drugs. As well as the modalities of controls. It is then necessary to get the opinion of staff representatives or employees. To ensure that everyone knows the rules that will prevail in the company.