Companies cannot afford to ignore substance abuse, warns Rhys Evans, the MD at ALCO-Safe, which provides alcohol- and drug-detection equipment. Human resources is key to controlling substance abuse at work. "It starts with putting a policy in place governing substance abuse because, quite simply, no organisation can discipline or fire an employee for breaking a rule that doesn't exist," he says. Evans has the following advice: A substance abuse policy should be part of the employment contract; The business must understand the legal requirements and what failure to keep to them will mean; Stay up to date with new legislation; Make sure your company's procedures meet legal requirements and can withstand testing in the Labour Court; The person who does the testing must be suitably trained; and  Breaking the rules (misconduct) is not the same as incapacity (due to substance abuse). Businesses should help those with dependencies, through rehabilitation, for example, although companies ar...

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