Alcohol and drug addiction are serious and debilitating problems that do not discriminate based on any social constructs. Since addiction can be seen throughout all levels of American society, the realization that employee addiction is not as rare as one may have thought helps to open the door to assistance more easily. The earlier an employee looks into getting help, the better chance they have at overcoming their addiction and becoming a productive worker once again.
With the struggle against addiction becoming a more openly realized occurrence in the workplace, far more treatment centers have begun to offer employee assistance programs to help.
What do Employee Assistance Programs offer?
Employee Assistance Programs are specifically designed to combat poor job performance that is occurring due to personal issues with drug and alcohol abuse. These assistance programs work directly with employers, allowing employees to confront the problem without the fear of losing their job. EPA representatives take the time out to personally hone in on your struggles and help you find a way out of addiction.
One of the first steps that an EPA representative may take is to perform a personal assessment of the employee. This step is especially important if your addiction has caused you to request a leave of absence. The EPA rep will create an individual treatment plan, catered to your needs. Scheduled counseling sessions will determine whether your treatment will be inpatient or outpatient.
While an inpatient treatment plan may initially seem distressful as many require a 30-day stay, specially placed leave provisions remove the concern surrounding missing too much work. Case confidentiality also provides a solid reassurance for employees that worry about missing out on work due to therapy sessions and group meet-ups.
The ADA and FMLA Protections are federal laws that shield employees from being discriminated against in the workplace due to a disability or a leave of absence. Medically diagnosed alcohol addictions are protected under the ADA, ensuring that employees receive the right treatment under their employer’s EAP department.
The FMLA guarantees that employees that need to take a leave of absence to rehabilitate can do so without the fear of losing their job.
When to Look Into Rehabilitation
If you have been struggling with drug and alcohol-related substance abuse that has been negatively affecting your ability to be productive in the workplace, then seeking help through rehab may your best step towards recovery.
Suffering in silence is not an option. Becoming more aware of the high occurrence of addiction in the workplace can help both employees and employers combat the problem together, in turn creating a more fruitful and healthier work environment.