9 Ways to Promote a Drug-Free & Recovery-Friendly Workplace

Make sure you have clear policies in place for dealing with drugs and alcohol in the workplace, and that every employee is educated at orientation. Such orientation should cover:

  • Expectations of a drug-free workplace—Employees are expected to not be under the influence at work and the policy outlines a clear procedure for violation of the policy. For more about evidence-based policies, check out this website. 
  • Drug-screening policies and procedures—Consider a positive drug screen as an opportunity for intervention and treatment, not an automatic termination. Make sure employees know how a positive drug-screen will be dealt with.
  • Employee-leave policies for treatment—Make it clear to employees that if they seek treatment, their job will be waiting for them when they are ready to return.
  • Overview of all available health and wellness programs—Consider using a health plan that covers mental health services.

Recovery-friendly tips for employers:

  • Compile a list of referrals to local drug and alcohol treatment facilities. Post this list of local support groups in the break room.
  • Participate in one prevention or recovery focused community event each year.
  • Provide stress management, wellness, and self-care education.
  • Support your employees in healthy choices. If an employee is trying to quit using tobacco, for example, do something thoughtful for them on their 1 week, or 1 month, or 1 year quit-iversary.
  • Provide a variety of non-alcohol options at company-wide events.
  • Encourage after-work bonding activities that do not revolve around alcohol, such as fun classes or activity-geared socials.
    • Some ideas: ping pong tournament, craft night, volunteering, escape rooms

Celebrate your employees’ recovery! They have accomplished something amazing through resilience, grit, and dedication. Make sure they know how valuable they are!