Supervisor Substance Abuse Training Needed To Curb Employee Drug and Alcohol Use

"It's only when employees think their supervisor knows how to detect substance use…and is willing to do something about it…that employees' drinking and drug use on the job decreases," according to Michael Frone, PhD, senior RIA research scientist and research associate professor of psychology, University of Buffalo.

A recent study from the University of Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions (RIA) finds that "It's only when employees think their supervisor knows how to detect substance use…and is willing to do something about it…that employees' drinking and drug use on the job decreases," according to Michael Frone, PhD, senior RIA research scientist and research associate professor of psychology.

The study, part of a $1.4 million research project, "Workplace Substance Use: A National Prevalence Study," funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) interviewed 2,429 workers, ranging in age from 18-65. The study found that workers reported drinking and using illicit drugs less at work when they thought their supervisors could both detect substance-use problems and were willing to take corrective action.

The study supports the use of courses such as "Reasonable Suspicion Supervisor Training" which provide information in how to spot and confront employee substance use at work. Educated Supervisors willing to take action help reduce alcohol and illicit drug use on the job, thereby improving employee productivity.

Article adapted from original press release, March 2012. "Supervisor Training Needed To Curb Employee Substance Use." Source: University of Buffalo. http://www.buffalo.edu/news/13305