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As an employer, you spend hours each day around your employees so you may be the first to notice a drug or alcohol problem. If you do notice one, it’s up to you to inform them about the resources you provide so that they can begin their recovery journey.

“Don’t ignore it until it’s too late,” says In The Rooms co-founder Ken Pomerance.

And it’s always a great idea to make sure your employees have the resources they may need to seek treatment from a drug or alcohol problem. Not only does it help their well being, it can save you money too! Misuse of drugs and alcohol can cost employers almost $200 billion annually, so helping your employees find treatment will help you in the long run. Here are five things you can do to help out employees with a drug or alcohol problem:

  1. Maintain a positive and open work environment: This is a great way to minimize a substance abuse issue before it even starts, as creating and maintaining a positive work environment can lift employees’ spirits and minimize stress. Criticism should be given constructively and employees’ small victories should be celebrated. Additionally, employees should feel like there is an open line of communication with their superiors. 
  2. Offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP): An EAP is a confidential, workplace program offered by you, the employer, that can provide your employees with short-term counseling, referrals, and assessments at no cost to them. This can be a great first step on an employee’s journey to recovery and can also lessen the financial burden a recovery program may have. “An EAP is there to help,” says Pomerance. To learn more, visit JustWorks.
  3. Review your company’s health insurance plan: Many health insurance plans cover treatment or rehabilitation centers to some degree- learn what is covered and share it with your employees so they can be more aware of what resources are available to them. 
  4. Find local meetings, like NA or AA: Find a meeting near your company using our meeting locator and post a list of local meetings somewhere where employees can see it, like the breakroom. This is a great way to discreetly provide help to those who may need it. 
  5. Promote an online recovery tool, like InTheRooms: Online recovery is a proven resource that can be a valuable part of your employee’s treatment. Our website, InTheRooms, offers live online meetings that can be accessed anywhere, making it convenient too, as employees can even attend meetings at work. Learn more about online recovery and InTheRooms

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