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Alcohol Awareness in the Workplace


Each year, an estimated 500 million workdays are lost to alcohol-related issues, costing $240 billion annually — and 72 percent of that is due to lost wages from reduced work productivity. Since April is Alcohol Awareness Month, which was created to increase outreach and understanding of the causes, effects and treatment of alcoholism, there’s no better time to promote workplace programs that may help employees with alcohol-related problems and ensure your company has an alcohol-free workplace policy.

In the United States, alcohol is the most used substance, and 95,000 Americans die from alcohol-related causes each year. In 2019, 19.3 million Americans had a substance use disorder, with three out of four (14.1 million) struggling with alcohol use. Most alcohol use disorders occur in people 26 years old or older (11 million).

Believe it or not, about 15 percent of U.S. workers have said they’ve used alcohol before or during work — and that’s under normal circumstances. Over the last year, the COVID-19 pandemic may have contributed to increased occupational alcohol abuse; one survey found that 46 percent of remote workers have clocked out early to pour themselves a drink at least once and another 45 percent admit to drinking during working hours. Another study found that alcohol consumption increased 14 percent during the pandemic. Additionally, in an April 2020 National Retail Federation survey, 70 percent of consumers made a purchase specifically as a result of COVID-19 — the top purchases were alcohol or CBD products.  Read More

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