Recognizing Substance Abuse in the Workplace - National Training

Recognizing Substance Abuse in the Workplace - National Training

8/3/2016 Recognizing Substance Abuse in the Workplace NATIONAL TRAINING INSTITUTE – ANN ARBOR MICHIGAN AUGUST 2016 Substance Abuse in the Workplace ...

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Recognizing Substance Abuse in the Workplace NATIONAL TRAINING INSTITUTE – ANN ARBOR MICHIGAN AUGUST 2016

Substance Abuse in the Workplace Depending where you’re standing in the US determines the most prevalent drugs. Where are you from? What drug are you reading about in the papers?

Substance Abuse in the Workplace Goals for Today’s Training: • Interactive Discussion • Learn From Each Other • Take Something Back You Can Apply at Work and/or Your Personal Life • Have a Better Understanding of the Drug Culture in the US



Substance Abuse in the Workplace Who is Doing It?

Substance Abuse in the Workplace Who is Doing It?

Substance Abuse in the Workplace US Department of Labor 

More than six percent of the population over 12 years of age (13.9 million people) has used drugs within the past thirty days. Rates of use remain highest among persons aged 16 to 25–the age group entering the work force most rapidly.1

Seventy-three percent of all current drug users aged 18 and older (8.3 million adults) are employed. This includes 6.7 million full-time workers and 1.6 million part-time workers.1 Working Partners: Substance Abuse in the Workplace . US Department of Labor 1



Substance Abuse in the Workplace US Department of Labor More than 14 percent of Americans employed full- and part-time report heavy drinking, which is defined as five or more drinks on five or more days in the past 30 days. The heaviest drinking occurred among persons between the ages of 18 and 25 years.2 Of the 11.2 million heavy drinkers in 1997, 30 percent (3.3 million) also were current illicit drug users. 3 2 National

Household Survey on Drug Abuse. Main Findings. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Rockville, MD.

3 National

Household Survey on Drug Abuse. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Substance Abuse in the Workplace US Department of Labor Construction workers (15.6%), sales personnel (11.4%), food preparation, wait staff, and bartenders (11.2%), handlers, helpers, and laborers (10.6%,) and machine operators and inspectors (10.5%) reported the highest rates of current illicit drug use. Protective service workers reported the lowest rate of current drug use (3.2%).4 4 An Analysis of Worker Drug Use and Workplace Policies and Programs." Office of Applied Studies, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Rockville, MD.

Substance Abuse in the Workplace US Department of Labor 

The occupational categories with above-average rates of heavy alcohol use, in addition to construction, were handlers, helpers, and laborers (15.7%), machine operators and inspectors (13.5%), transportation and material movers (13.1%), precision production and repair workers (13.1%), and employees in food preparation, including wait staff and bartenders (12.2%).4

According to a national survey conducted by the Hazelden Foundation, more than sixty percent of adults know people who have gone to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol.5 4 An Analysis of Worker Drug Use and Workplace Policies and Programs." Office of Applied Studies, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Rockville, MD. 5

Addiction in the Workplace Survey." Hazelden Foundation. Center City, MN.



Substance Abuse in the Workplace The cost of Substance Abuse? The economic and human costs of drug and alcohol use are astounding. In fact, the National Institutes of Health recently reported that alcohol and drug abuse cost the economy $500 billion in 2010, the most recent year for which economic data are available.6 In addition, numerous studies, reports and surveys suggest that substance abuse is having a profoundly negative affect on the workplace in terms of decreased productivity and increased accidents, absenteeism, turnover, and medical costs. Following are notable statistics that highlight the impact of substance abuse on the workplace. The Economic Costs of Alcohol and Drug Abuse in the United States." National Institute on Drug Abuse. National Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse. Rockville, MD.


Substance Abuse in the Workplace The cost of Substance Abuse? 

Problems resulting from the use of alcohol and other drugs cost American businesses an estimated $250 billion in lost productivity due to premature death and illness; 86% of these combined costs were attributed to drinking.7

According to results of a NIDA-sponsored survey, drug-using employees are 2.2 times more likely to request early dismissal or time off, 2.5 times more likely to have absences of eight days or more, three times more likely to be late for work, 3.6 times more likely to be involved in a workplace accident, and five times more likely to file a workers’ compensation claim.9 7 Substance

Abuse and Mental Health Statistics Sourcebook. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Rockville, MD.

9 Backer,

T.E. Strategic Planning for Workplace Drug Abuse Programs. National Institute on Drug Abuse. Rockville, MD.

Substance Abuse in the Workplace The cost of Substance Abuse? Full-time workers age 18-49 who reported current illicit drug use were more likely than those reporting no current illicit drug use to state that they had worked for three or more employers in the past year (32.1% versus 17.9%), taken an unexcused absence from work in the past month (12.1% versus 6.1%), voluntarily left an employer in the past year (25.8 % versus 13.6%), and been fired by an employer in the past year (4.6% versus 1.4%). Similar results were reported for employees who were heavy alcohol users.8 8 An Analysis of Worker Drug Use and Workplace Policies and Programs." Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, DHHS. Rockville, MD.



Substance Abuse in the Workplace The cost of Substance Abuse? Results from a U.S. Postal Service study indicate that employees who tested positive on their pre-employment drug test were 77 percent more likely to be discharged within the first three years of employment, and were absent from work 66 percent more often than those who tested negative.10 10 Normand, J., Salyards, S. & Maloney, J. "An Evaluation of Preemployment Drug Testing." Journal of Applied Psychology. Vol. 75, No. 6.

Substance Abuse in the Workplace The cost of Substance Abuse? A survey of callers to the national cocaine helpline revealed that 75 percent reported using drugs on the job, 64 percent admitted that drugs adversely affected their job performance, 44 percent sold drugs to other employees, and 18 percent had stolen from co-workers to support their drug habit.11 Alcoholism causes 500 million lost workdays each year.12 11 National

Cocaine Helpline. "1-800-COCAINE." Summit, NJ.

12 “Treatment is the Answer: A White Paper on the Cost-Effectiveness of Alcoholism and Drug Dependency Treatment." National Association of Treatment Providers. Laguna Hills, CA.

Substance Abuse in the Workplace The cost of Substance Abuse?

Why do you think substance abuse is high amongst construction workers? Do you think it is lower amongst skilled trades?




Alcoholism Warning Signs Leave and Attendance 

Unexplained or unauthorized absences from work

Frequent tardiness

Excessive use of sick leave

Patterns of absence such as the day after payday or frequent Monday or Friday absences

Frequent unplanned absences due to "emergencies" (e.g., household repairs, car trouble, family emergencies, legal problems)

The employee may also be absent from his or her duty station without explanation or permission for significant periods of time.

Alcoholism Warning Signs Performance Problems 

Missed deadlines

Careless or sloppy work or incomplete assignments

Production quotas not met

Many excuses for incomplete assignments or missed deadlines

Faulty analysis

In jobs requiring long-term projects or detailed analysis, an employee may be able to hide a performance problem for quite some time.



Alcoholism Warning Signs Relationships at Work 

Relationships with co-workers may become strained

The employee may be belligerent, argumentative, or short-tempered, especially in the mornings or after weekends or holidays

The employee may become a "loner"

The employee may also have noticeable financial problems evidenced by borrowing money from other employees or receiving phone calls at work from creditors or collection companies.

Alcoholism Warning Signs Behavior at Work  The appearance of being inebriated or under the influence of alcohol might include:  The smell of alcohol  Staggering, or an unsteady gait  Bloodshot eyes  Smell of alcohol on the breath  Mood and behavior changes such as excessive laughter and inappropriate loud talk  Excessive use of mouthwash or breath mints  Avoidance of supervisory contact, especially after lunch  Tremors  Sleeping on duty Not any one of these signs means that an employee is an alcoholic. However, when there are performance and conduct problems coupled with any number of these signs, it is time to make a referral to the EAP for an assessment so that the employee can get help if it is needed.

Alcoholism Things to avoid….and things to do. Things to Avoid 

Avoid being an "enabler." An enabler is someone who allows the alcoholic to continue the addiction without being held responsible for his or her actions. Supervisors often think that they are being kind, when actually they are hurting the alcoholic employee by letting him or her continue to engage in selfdestructive behaviors. In addition, failing to hold the alcoholic employee accountable can have a negative effect on co-workers’ morale. Examples of supervisory behavior that might be considered enabling include:

Covering up for the employee;

Lending the employee money;

Allowing the employee’s spouse, rather than the employee, to call about the employee’s absence;

Failing to refer the employee to the EAP;

Shifting the employee’s work to other employees;

Trying to counsel the employee on your own;

Making excuses to others about the employee’s behavior or performance; and

Adjusting the employee’s work schedule, for example, allowing the employee to continually come in late and make up the hours later



Alcoholism Things to avoid….and things to do. Active Countermeasures to Consider 

Document, Document, Document

Know your CBA – What can do? What is prohibited?

Confront the with your observations

Refer to EAP and/or Human Resources

Consider putting them on leave

Consider a contract when they return to duty 

Random alcohol test (Get a PBT)

Have a written plan both agree upon

Alcoholism - The Eyes Never Lie Horizontal Eye Gaze Nystagmus (HGN)

Alcoholism Workplace Breath Test





Marihuana/Marijuana Warning Signs Other than alcohol, marijuana is the most commonly abused drug in the United States. Marijuana is a dry, shredded mix of the flowers, stems, and leaves of the hemp plant cannabis sativa. Marijuana smoke has a pungent and distinctive, usually sweet-and-sour odor. Behavioral changes that may be symptoms of marijuana addiction include: 

Distorted perceptions

Impaired coordination

Difficulty in thinking and problem solving

Ongoing problems with learning and memory



Marihuana/Marijuana Warning Signs Additionally, several other signs of marijuana abuse are frequently visible in users:  Red, blurry, bloodshot eyes  Constant, mucus-filled cough  Rapid heartbeat  Hunger, referred to as munchies  Dry mouth  Anxiety, paranoia, or fear  Poor memory  Poor coordination  Slow reaction time  Loss of control  Addiction

Marihuana/Marijuana Paraphernalia

Challenges of Medical Marihuana and Legalized Marihuana Occupational Safety Health Act 

The act has a general clause requiring employers to provide a safe work environment.

Employers who allow impaired employees to work in safety sensitive positions where others may be harmed may be in volition of this requirement.

Drug Free Workplace Act 

Applies to employers who receive certain federal funds

Requires a zero tolerance policy.



Marihuana/Marijuana Workplace Issues According to the American Society of Safety Engineers. Marihuana users are: 

3.6 times more likely to be involved in a workplace incident

5 times more likely to file a workers’ comp claim

2.2 times more likely to request early dismissal or time off

2.5 times more likely to be absent eight days or more annually

3 times more likely to be late for work.

Marihuana Use – The Eyes Never Lie Red Eyes

Marihuana/Marijuana Designer What Marihuana is being laced with: 

Phencyclidine (PCP)

Crushed Opioid Pills

Embalming Fluids







What are Opioids??? Opioids are medications that relieve pain. They reduce the intensity of pain signals reaching the brain and affect those brain areas controlling emotion, which diminishes the effects of a painful stimulus. Medications that fall within this class include hydrocodone (e.g., Vicodin), oxycodone (e.g., OxyContin, Percocet), morphine (e.g., Kadian, Avinza), codeine, and related drugs. Hydrocodone products are the most commonly prescribed for a variety of painful conditions, including dental and injury-related pain. Morphine is often used before and after surgical procedures to alleviate severe pain. Codeine, on the other hand, is often prescribed for mild pain

How do people become addicted to opioids?  Sports

injuries (children)

 Particular

types of medical procedures

Knees Hips Back Dental  Over

prescription of opioids medication/Pill Mills

Opioid Abuse Warning Signs: Reduced social interaction Drowsiness Poor memory and concentration Anxiety Constipation (may try to acquire remedies) Slowed breathing Slow movement and reactions Mood swings Apathy and depression.



Lifestyle and Behavioral Changes: 

Whatever money they have will go for drugs so they may not have required items that they would normally be expected to have.

Alternately, as some people begin to sell drugs to support their addiction, they may have unexpected money or expensive items.

They will begin to be preoccupied with obtaining drugs and maintaining their addiction and so will drop out of touch with family and friends. They may have a whole new set of friends who are drug users.

They may commit illegal acts to get money for drugs and may be arrested.

They probably will begin to neglect work and school.

Lifestyle and Behavioral Changes (continued): 

They probably will begin to neglect work and school.

They may show change in overall attitude and have outbursts of bad temper.

The person may talk about partying or drinking more than before.

The person may appear jittery and be secretive.

They are likely to allow grooming and physical appearance to deteriorate.

Loans of money may be asked for and items from the homes of family members may go missing.

Long sleeved clothes may be worn if the person is an intravenous drug user.

Opioid Use – The Eyes Never Lie Red Eyes



Heroin Epidemic in America ABC News Special




Heroin Heroin Quick Facts: 

Same or greater issues as opioids

The Purity

The Cut

Supply and Demand – Cheaper than Opioid Pills on the Street

It is Vogue

The Unintended Consequence of Narcan

The Eyes Never Lie




Cocaine Signs of Cocaine Addiction 

Repeated nosebleeds

Manic behavior


Severe paranoia

Constant scratching or complaints of itching

Collapse of nostrils

Cocaine Signs of Cocaine Addiction (continued) 




Loss of sense of smell

Chronically hoarse voice

Exhaustion or difficulty functioning during day-to-day activities




Cocaine Oven Baked or Microwaved?

The Eyes Never Lie Cocaine

Excited Delirium Excited delirium syndrome (ExDS) is a serious and potentially deadly medical condition involving psychotic behavior, elevated temperature, and an extreme fight-or-flight response by the nervous system. Failure to recognize the symptoms and involve emergency medical services (EMS) to provide appropriate medical treatment may lead to death. Fatality rates of up to 10 percent in ExDS cases have been reported.



Excited Delirium

Methamphetamine Physical Warning Signs of Crystal Meth Abuse 

Dilated pupils.

Bloodshot eyes.

Weight loss.

Uncontrolled twitching or jerking, such as eye twitching.

Chronic nasal problems – i.e. deviated septum, nosebleeds.

Bad breath.

Dry, cracked skin, especially lips and fingertips.

Dry mouth.






Methamphetamine The Faces of Meth



Methamphetamine The Faces of Meth

Methamphetamine In the Workplace Employers should be alert to the following signs that may signal an employee's use of methamphetamine or other controlled substances, as well as abuse of alcohol: 

Recurring absences on Mondays or unexplained absences during working hours, especially at the end of a day.

Sudden changes in behavior or performance that cannot be explained by intervening events.

Excessive agitation, which methamphetamine users call "tweaking," or its opposite: fatigue.

Unusual impairment in attention or memory

Other Drugs Hallucinogens/LSD/Acid Hallucinogens/LSD/Acid: Extremely dilated pupils, warm skin, excessive perspiration, and body odor are symptoms. Distorted sense of sight, hearing, touch; distorted image of self and time perception, mood and behavior changes, the extent depending on emotional state of the user and environmental conditions. Unpredictable flashback episodes even long after withdrawal (although these are rare). Hallucinogenic drugs, which occur both naturally and in synthetic form, distort or disturb sensory input, sometimes to a great degree. Hallucinogens occur naturally in primarily two forms, (peyote) cactus and psilocybin mushrooms.



Other Drugs Ecstasy Ecstasy: Confusion, blurred vision, rapid eye movement, chills or sweating, high body temperature, sweating profusely, dehydrated, confusion, faintness, paranoia or severe anxiety, panic attacks, trance-like state, transfixed on sights and sounds, unconscious clenching of the jaw, grinding teeth, muscle tension, very affectionate. Depression, headaches, dizziness (from hangover/after effects), possession of pacifiers (used to stop jaw clenching), lollipops, candy necklaces, mentholated vapor rub, vomiting or nausea (from hangover/after effects).

Other Drugs Hallucinogens/LSD/Acid Several chemical varieties have been synthesized, most notably LSD, MDA, STP, and PCP. Hallucinogen usage reached a peak in the United States in the late 1960s, but declined shortly thereafter due to a broader awareness of the detrimental effects of usage. However, a disturbing trend indicating resurgence in hallucinogen usage by high school and college students nationwide has been acknowledged by law enforcement. With the exception of PCP, all hallucinogens seem to share common effects of use. Any portion of sensory perceptions may be altered to varying degrees. Synesthesia, or the “seeing” of sounds, and the “hearing” of colors, is a common side effect of hallucinogen use. Depersonalization, acute anxiety, and acute depression resulting in suicide have also been noted as a result of hallucinogen use.

Other Drugs Phencyclidine PCP: Unpredictable behavior; mood may swing from passivity to violence for no apparent reason. Symptoms of intoxication, disorientation, agitation and violence if exposed to excessive sensory stimulation. Fear, terror, rigid muscles, strange gait, deadened sensory perception (may experience severe injuries while appearing not to notice). Pupils may appear dilated. Masklike facial appearance, floating pupils, appear to follow a moving object. Comatose (unresponsive) if large amount consumed, eyes may be open or closed.



The Eyes Never Lie Phencyclidine (PCP)

Inhalants Whipped Cream, Paint and Cement Inhalants: Substance odor on breath and clothes, runny nose, watering eyes, drowsiness or unconsciousness, poor muscle control. Prefers group activity to being alone. Presence of bags or rags containing dry plastic cement or other solvent at home, in locker at school or at work. Discarded whipped cream, spray paint or similar chargers (users of nitrousoxide). Small bottles labeled “incense” (users of butyl nitrite). Pupils: Normal to Dilated

Drug Testing 

Know what your CBA/Policy allows

Understand the behaviors associated with various drugs and how to articulate the workplace use/abuse

Know what type of test is best:  Saliva  Urine  Hair



Workplace Substance Abuse Questions???

It's All About the Nomenclature Drugs or Electricity



Contact Info Carl Schinner Chief of Police La Plata, MD 20646 301-935-1500 extension 601 [email protected]