** Caution: information may be out of date. **
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The U.S. Department of Labor is encouraging employers to use its Working Partners for an Alcohol- and Drug-Free Workplace Web site to help them establish drug-free workplace programs that protect worker safety and health, while improving productivity and bottom-line profits.
Of the nation's 16.6 million adult illicit drug users, 12.4 million (74.6 percent) work either full or part time, according to recently released results of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA) 2002 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Such drug use can adversely impact the workplace. For example, in 2000, workers reporting past month drug use were more likely to have worked for more than three employers in a year, missed work more than two days in the past month due to illness or injury, and skipped work more than two days in the past month.
Employers can protect their businesses from these negative effects by developing drug-free workplace programs that educate employees about the dangers of alcohol and drug abuse and encourage individuals with related problems to seek help. DOL's Working Partners Web site provides employers with free resources and tools to help establish and maintain such programs.
"As an online resource, Working Partners helps workers and employers work together to ensure a safe and drug-free environment for families, schools, and communities," Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao said. "Working Partners is an important part of President George W. Bush's campaign to eliminate drug use in our country and the economic, social and emotional devastation caused by drug addiction."
The Working Partners Web site features the Drug-Free Workplace Advisor, an interactive tool that helps employers build tailored, drug-free workplace policies and programs; the Substance Abuse Information Database, an online repository of hundreds of documents related to workplace alcohol and drug abuse; information about substance abuse and how it affects employment; and directories of national, state and local resources and state laws that may assist employers in making their businesses drug free.