Legislation and Legal Responsibilities & Industries We Work With

What Laws Cover Drugs & Alcohol In The Workplace

The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971” makes production, possession and supply of controlled drugs unlawful except in some specified circumstances such as when the drugs have been legally prescribed by a doctor or licenced prescriber.

An employer who knowingly permits the supply, possession or production of controlled drugs on their premises could also be prosecuted.

The “Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999” puts a legal duty on employers to assess the risk to the health and safety of their employees.

The “Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 places a duty on the employer to provide, so far as reasonably possible, the safety, health and welfare of employees.

Are Employers At Risk of Breaking The Law?

Employers could be committing an offence if they knowingly allow employees to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol where it places them or others at risk.

Employees must also take reasonable care of their own health and safety and that of others who encounter the workplace.

The “Road Traffic Act 1988” and the Drug Driving (Specified Limits England and Wales) Regulations 2014 make it clear that anyone in charge of a motor vehicle with blood drug concentrations above specified limits, is guilty of a criminal offence.

The “Railway and Transport Safety Act 2003” makes it a criminal offence for to have a proportion of alcohol that exceeds the limits established in the act similar to the Road traffic Act 1988, or to have impaired ability to function as a result of drug or alcohol use whilst working in aviation, maritime, railways tramways and other guided transport systems.

Likewise, employers and operators could also be guilty of an offence if they are not able to demonstrate due diligence in trying to prevent such offences being committed.

What Laws Cover Drugs & Alcohol In The Workplace

The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971” makes production, possession and supply of controlled drugs unlawful except in some specified circumstances such as when the drugs have been legally prescribed by a doctor or licenced prescriber.

An employer who knowingly permits the supply, possession or production of controlled drugs on their premises could also be prosecuted.

The “Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999” puts a legal duty on employers to assess the risk to the health and safety of their employees.

The “Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 places a duty on the employer to provide, so far as reasonably possible, the safety, health and welfare of employees.

Employers could be committing an offence if they knowingly allow employees to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol where it places them or others at risk.

Employees must also take reasonable care of their own health and safety and that of others who encounter the workplace.

The “Road Traffic Act 1988” and the Drug Driving (Specified Limits England and Wales) Regulations 2014 make it clear that anyone in charge of a motor vehicle with blood drug concentrations above specified limits, is guilty of a criminal offence.

The “Railway and Transport Safety Act 2003” makes it a criminal offence for to have a proportion of alcohol that exceeds the limits established in the act similar to the Road traffic Act 1988, or to have impaired ability to function as a result of drug or alcohol use whilst working in aviation, maritime, railways tramways and other guided transport systems.

Likewise, employers and operators could also be guilty of an offence if they are not able to demonstrate due diligence in trying to prevent such offences being committed.

Speak to Our Workplace Specialists Today

Speak to our addiction specialists in Essex who can help you today.

Who Do We Provide Training To?

Aimed at organisations small or corporate who are likely to come into contact with people who misuse drugs and/or alcohol, our range of courses and bespoke educational awareness programs provide delegates with an in-depth understanding of the key drug and alcohol misuse issues relevant to your specific working environment.

By providing the facts from current up to date research, recommended theories and addiction models for best practices on how to educate and support people who are likely to or who are presenting with current misuse of drugs and/or alcohol difficulties, our main aim is dispelling stigma, discrimination and myths. 

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UK Regulatory and Statutory Guidelines

The Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development

Managing drug and alcohol misuse at work recommendations:

Directors, senior managers, personnel specialists, line managers, occupational health staff and the union employee representatives would all benefit from training, which could include:

  • Information on the effects of drug and alcohol misuse at work
  • Help and support available for staff
  • Basic interviewing and advisory skills
  • Supervisors, line managers, and so on will benefit from training on how to implement the policy.

Managers should be trained to behave with caution and, where there are doubts, to seek a medical opinion from Occupational Health.

Managing Drug and Alcohol Misuse Guide

The Health and Safety Executive Guidelines

Managing drugs and alcohol at work state:

Employers have a legal duty to protect employees health, safety and welfare. Understanding the signs of drug and alcohol misuse (or abuse) will help you to

  • Manage health and safety risk in your workplace
  • Develop a policy to deal with drug and alcohol-related problems
  • Support your employees.

HSE – Managing Drugs and Alcohol at Work- Develop a Policy 

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service

ACAS Recommendations:

An education programme for managers is particularly important: it could include details of signs to look for, how to deal with workers who seek help, and where expert advice and help may be obtained.

Being able to direct your workers to help is an important step. This may help them to recognise the dangers of alcohol, drug and other substance misuse and encourage them to seek help.

It may also persuade your management and staff that covering up for someone with a drugs problem is not in that person’s long-term interests.

ACAS – Alcohol and Drug Policies Guidance 

UK Regulatory and Statutory Guidelines

The Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development

Managing drug and alcohol misuse at work recommendations:

Directors, senior managers, personnel specialists, line managers, occupational health staff and the union employee representatives would all benefit from training, which could include:

  • Information on the effects of drug and alcohol misuse at work
  • Help and support available for staff
  • Basic interviewing and advisory skills
  • Supervisors, line managers, and so on will benefit from training on how to implement the policy.

Managers should be trained to behave with caution and, where there are doubts, to seek a medical opinion from Occupational Health.

Managing Drug and Alcohol Misuse Guide

The Health and Safety Executive Guidelines

Managing drugs and alcohol at work state:

Employers have a legal duty to protect employees health, safety and welfare. Understanding the signs of drug and alcohol misuse (or abuse) will help you to

  • Manage health and safety risk in your workplace
  • Develop a policy to deal with drug and alcohol-related problems
  • Support your employees.

HSE – Managing Drugs and Alcohol at Work- Develop a Policy 

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service

ACAS Recommendations:

An education programme for managers is particularly important: it could include details of signs to look for, how to deal with workers who seek help, and where expert advice and help may be obtained.

Being able to direct your workers to help is an important step. This may help them to recognise the dangers of alcohol, drug and other substance misuse and encourage them to seek help.

It may also persuade your management and staff that covering up for someone with a drugs problem is not in that person’s long-term interests.

ACAS – Alcohol and Drug Policies Guidance 

Speak to Our Workplace Specialists Today

Speak to our addiction specialists in Essex who can help you today.

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