Lack of knowledge of how to efficiently and humanely address SUD or mental health issues on the job costs us all. Heavy drinking habits alone costs $82 billion in lost productivity and increases the risk of accidents by 270%. About 75% of adults with untreated SUDs are part of the US workforce and miss around 50% more work then their peers. Compare that to the fact that employees who are in recovery miss 5 fewer days than those still using and save their employers an average of $3,200 in health care costs. Each dollar spent on treatment and early intervention saves $4 in health care costs and $7 in criminal justice costs. The solution for employers is simple: get educated on how take smart action to better address SUD issues in their organizations.
CRAs Recovery Friendly Workplace Checklist
- Reach out to a CRA team member or other local professionals with knowledge of action steps to creating a RFW to get initial education and orientation on benefits and resources needed to enhance your RFW
- Work with your leadership team to ensure a real commitment to engage a sustainable RFW process.
- Create an internal team to better incorporate RFW components into your healthy workplace efforts — should minimally include an executive, an HR leader, and a frontline staff member.
- Ensure all leadership team and HR team members receive RFW training.
- Provide employees and their family members with information resources around health and wellness support services available from your organization that include issues related to substance abuse and mental health concerns.
- Create and use referral system to engage employees with rapid support for substance abuse or mental health issues when first noted.
- Operate a substance free workplace and ensure your substance use policy is reviewed and fits the current needs of your organization and your employees.
- Educate, educate, educate your employees on risks and treatment options for substance abuse and mental health issues and benefits of treatment and recovery.
- Create and use a Health & Wellness Behavioral Contract as part of employee support and performance management for co-workers and their community.
Employers who embark on a journey to strengthen their RFW policies and actions are investing in their workers, business and our community. We at CRA are here to help. Here are a few resources to help support this important commitment:
For Employees and Families
Active addiction tears families apart and can be horribly damaging to the somebody trapped by addiction. We at CRA are here to help. Here are few resources to help support your courageous attempt to heal yourself and/or your family:
RFW Tool Kit
View our Tool Kit Here
What is RFW
Recovery Friendly Workplaces support their staff, organization and community by recognizing recovery from SUD as a courageous and journey and a strength. These workplaces encourage safe and healthy environments where employees, employers and the community work together to address the difficult issues around SUDs and mental health issues.
Quick Guide to Help
- Early Identification
SUD’s in general do not go away without treatment
2. Instant Support
Employers who have policies and practices to quickly address staff SUD issues are more likely retain employees and increase productivity.
3. Employer Flexibility
Employers who support their employees dealing with SUD may need both a tough love and flexible approach. One size does not fit all when it comes to medical treatment.
4. Regular Review
SUD is a disorder that requires consistent and regular communication and clarity.
5. Enlisting Success
SUD and mental health issues are big for those suffering with them, for family and friends, for fellow employees and employers, and our community. Solutions work best when we work together to address them smarter and more humanely.
It is important to remember that RFWs are still a relatively new though growing effort. As such, their legal ramifications are still taking shape. Employers exploring becoming an RFW should consult with their lawyer or a firm that specializes in employment law. RFWs touch on issues related to ADA, FMLA, OSHA and HIPPA.