Spotlight on HR Drugs Policies

A Sunday Times investigation found evidence of cocaine in 11 out of 12 lavatory locations tested inside the Houses of Parliament, additionally, the publication reported that commons officials had received reports last month that cannabis could be smelt in an open space used by staff for cigarette breaks.

House of Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle has promised to raise the allegations of drug use in Parliament with the Metropolitan Police this week, describing the discovery as “deeply concerning”.

2020 research titled Managing Drug and Alcohol Misuse at Work from the CIPD suggests only one in five employers are failing to offer proactive support to workers to help prevent and provide support on issues of drugs and alcohol misuse. Moreover, that few employers currently train managers on their drug and alcohol policies.

A Senior Policy Adviser at the CIPD explained: “It is vitally important for organisations to recognise drug or alcohol misuse as a health, safety and employee wellbeing concern, not just a disciplinary issue.”

Despite the relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions in the UK, vigilance remains essential when it comes to safety and hygiene in the workplace. These concerns have led some businesses to scale down their alcohol and drug screening activities for fear of breaching the ‘hands, face, space’ recommendations.

More people are drinking at home, and now that pubs and clubs have reopened, some are making up for lost time by over-indulging during nights out.

Employers have a legal duty to protect the safety of staff by ensuring that these issues do not create risk in the workplace, and it is particularly important to be vigilant for drug misuse around the festive period.

With no policy in place the employer is left with only the ability to have an informal conversation with those involved.

121 HR Solutions can reassess or create a Drugs & Alcohol Misuse policy and train your managers, simply contact us today and we will be happy to discuss.

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