Drug And Alcohol Abuse Amongst Employees
Role Of Private Investigators + Undercover Operatives
Most people have had too much to drink, at least once in their life but they often don’t realize the real danger that drinking or using drugs can present. They start, thinking they are in absolute control, only to find themselves ruled by the substances that they use. In the article, we shall take a closer look at substance abuse, its hazards it poses on people’s lives, and what we can do to prevent it.
SUBSTANCES THAT ARE OFTEN ABUSED
The term substance abuse can be the overuse of alcohol, misuse of over-the-counter medication and prescription, or the use of illegal drugs. It can also involve inhaling or huffing chemicals such as solvents lighter fluid or glue or eating magic mushrooms or other toxic plant substances that produce a high effect on how the nervous system functions.
Depressants such as alcohol, marijuana, tranquilizers slow down brain activity.
Stimulants such as cocaine, crack, methamphetamine speed up brain activity.
- NARCOTIC ANALGESICS & PAINKILLERS
Narcotics analgesics and painkillers such as Heroin, Morphine, and OxyContin numb the senses.
- LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide)
Hallucinogens such as LSD alter the way the brain processes information. Some drugs affect users in multiple ways— ecstasy is both a stimulant and a hallucinogen.
A substance abuser’s personality and ability to function are directly affected by the drug that they take. Cocaine and another stimulant can make people overconfident, hyperactive, and even reckless which significantly can increase the risk of them having an accident on the job. Alcohol and depressant create a dangerous sedative effect that can slow reaction time and can stop them from thinking clearly, which are potential workplace problems. Since people feel good when they are under the influence of alcohol and drugs, they often don’t recognize that they are dangerous to themselves and others.
Additionally, the residual effect of a substance can causes a person to have accident hours or even days after they last used it. So, what a substance abuser does on their own time can still affect them and their co-worker on the job.
When people think of substance abuse, they often picture an addict living on the streets, but the fact is most abusers have jobs and are frequently able to conceal their problems from their employers, co-workers, and even their families. Alcohol is by far the most commonly abused of all drugs. In the United States, there are over 38 million binge drinkers, nearly half of all serious workplace accidents are caused by people drinking on the job and 10,000 people die each year in alcohol-related automobile accidents. Impairment starts with the first drink, making it extremely dangerous to operate vehicles or machinery. If a co-worker who appears to be under the influence is attempting to drive, notify your supervisor, if you aren’t on the job, call the police.
However, be careful— a drunk person may act irrationally, have emotional outbursts even become violent. After alcohol, the second most abused drug is marijuana. Once illegal throughout the country, marijuana has now been approved for medical and even recreational use in several states but changes in the drug’s legal status do not make it any safer than alcohol. Marijuana is a depressant that impairs short-term memory, reduces the ability to concentrate, affects coordination, and shows reaction time all of which increase the risk of accidents and injuries in the workplace. Marijuana use also has a cumulative effect that can cause long-term users to lose ambition, suffer from paranoia, and develop negative personality traces that can hurt their chances of career advancement.
People who smoke marijuana also often drink alcohol to increase their “high” but being doubly impaired increases their likelihood of involving in an accident. Combining drugs can also lead to an overdose for instance consuming alcohol with strong depressants such as barbiturates and tranquilizers.
INVESTIGATING DRUG ABUSE IN YOUR COMPANY RANKS
If you suspect your employees of substance abuse, you may be compelled to investigate at some point. Managers frequently utilize free third-party examination firms to conduct the examination. This can be a fair approach to the suspected substance mishandled among representatives within the working environment. In case the investigators find the affirmed issue exists, they document the unfortunate behavior with point-by-point reports. This permits the employer to require fitting disciplinary and remedial activity and to guard themselves against most quarrelsome claims or due to any emergency identified in post-investigation.
Upon learning of potential drug issues, most employers are enticed to report the company incorporates a “zero tolerance” for drugs and liquor within the working environment. Employers ought to be mindful be that as it may that the employer’s substance abuse policy must be upgraded to reflect current rules and as it relates to work law.
There are more practicable ways to approach employee substance abuse. For illustration, undercover operatives can be put into the workforce subtly, mixing easily and consistently into the fabric of your company’s corporate socioeconomics and culture.
In case the investigation is administered by your legal team, beneath the heading and umbrella of the attorney-client benefit, the discoveries of the investigation can as a rule be protected from undesirable third-party investigation. At all times, the client and lawyer are in charge of the length and breadth of the examination, and the communication between them and the investigators ought to be through in-person contact preferably.
An inner examination in some cases includes drug-testing, a few utilize dogs, and a few utilize covert operatives. Wall Street and other expansive enterprises started utilizing private investigations long ago with the request ever increasing in most large corporations. General Motors (GM) has stated that substance abuse cases were mishandled by a few of its 472,000 employees and their dependents, which cost the company $600 million in 1987. To combat the issue, GM instituted covert operations at 10 mid-western plants and said it would not falter to utilize such investigations in the future.
Drug abuse can tarnish the image of an organization; therefore, regular background check with random drug testing can also assist companies in identifying employees who are high risk for illegal activity.
About the Author
Chris Cavallo has been in the Security and Investigations Industry for 40 + years and is considered an expert in various areas such as background investigations and conducting complex surveillance operations. He started his career working as an undercover investigator for 18 months in various settings to identify drug abuse and employee theft/fraud at his assigned locations under investigation. He has done business on every continent either through his own companies or through the partnerships that he has developed and maintained during his professional career.
© COPYRIGHT CHRISTOPHER M. CAVALLO 2021. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. PROTECTED BY THE COPYRIGHT LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES & CANADA AND BY INTERNATIONAL TREATIES. IT IS ILLEGAL AND STRICTLY PROHIBITED TO DISTRIBUTE, PUBLISH, OFFER FOR SALE, LICENSE OR SUBLICENSE, GIVE OR DISCLOSE TO ANY OTHER PARTY. THIS PRODUCT IN HARD COPY OR DIGITAL FORM.ALL OFFENDERS WILL BE SUED IN A COURT OF LAW.