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Ask a specialist… What are my obligations in relation to drug and alcohol misuse?
Ask the specialistApril 3, 2017
Drugs and alcohol in the workplace give rise to a number of concerns, but none more prominent than health and safety issues. Employers have an obligation under the relevant state work health and safety legislation to maintain a safe working environment and ensure that their workers are not putting themselves or others at risk.
Drug and alcohol misuse can result in workplace accidents, absenteeism and excessive use of personal leave, workplace violence, and employee turnover. To avoid all of these problems in your workplace, it is considered best practice to have a drug and alcohol policy in place and to make sure that you are enforcing the policy.
In terms of what specific details to have in a drug and alcohol policy in your workplace, this will vary depending on the nature of your industry and the nature of the work being undertaken. In addition to the general obligation under health and safety legislation, certain industries such as rail, aviation, and mining, have specific statutory obligations in relation to drug and alcohol policies and testing regimes. It is important to be mindful of the specific obligations relevant to your workplace.
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