Half of all UK organisations have no policy on drugs and alcohol

June 2003
Management Services;Jun2003, Vol. 47 Issue 6, p7
Academic Journal
Research from the Chartered Management Institute and Priory Group was launched recently at the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Management. It reveals that only half of managers surveyed believe that their organisation has put in place--or is developing-a policy on drugs and alcohol. Thankfully, this percentage increases to 87 per cent for managers working in the uniformed or emergency services. Up to 14 million working days are lost each year to alcohol-related problems and 27% of organisations report issues due to employees' misuse of drugs. The estimated annual cost to Great Britain industries is 3.5 billion pounds, yet many managers are still not equipped to deal with this issue in the workplace. One in five managers claim that alcohol misuse in their organisation has risen over the past few years and around one in six managers claim that drugs misuse has also increased. Moreover, while 85% of managers are confident that they would be able to recognise signs of alcohol misuse, only 54% claim to have the same ability to spot misuse when it comes to drugs. More than six in ten managers feel that it is the responsibility of employers to provide education on the effects of drugs and alcohol abuse, but only 19 percent say that their organisation addresses the issue proactively. 'The results of this survey show that drugs and alcohol are becoming increasingly recognised as a major concern in the workplace" comments Dr. Chai Patel, chief executive of the Priory Group. "But it is very evident that a significant proportion of organisations have not yet put the resources or support in place to reduce the potential problems that misuse of these substances can cause".


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