Alcohol is the most widely used mood changing drug in Australia and can result in a range of physical, emotional and social harms. Alcohol is toxic to the body and there are many short term and long term effects that can impact heavily on your health.
There are minimum requirements under the Occupational Safety and Health Act. Please see WorkSafe WA's Guidance note on alcohol and other drugs at the workplace for more information.
Did you know that 1 in 5 Australian adults drink at levels that are harmful to their health?
Reducing alcohol-related harm has considerable economic benefits to workplaces. Australian research estimates some of the economic costs of alcohol use and related harm to Australian workplaces:
With one in five Australian adults drinking at levels that are dangerous to their health, it is important for workplaces to actively manage alcohol in the workplace. It is best practice to be an alcohol-free workplace, however this may not be possible for all workplaces. In all instances, clear guidelines should be developed to ensure staff understand your organisation's stance on alcohol. Workplaces can play a vital role in supporting staff with their alcohol issues through providing education and counselling services such as an Employee Assistance Program.
Even though alcohol may not be available in the workplace, it may be present at work-related functions or social events. At these events, the employer still has a duty of care to ensure the health and safety of their workers. For further information, check out the Australian Guidelines to Reduce Health Risks from Drinking Alcohol.
Take a look at our latest clip for tips to cut back on alcohol in the workplace:
Toolbox video #5: Cutting back on the booze.
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