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Saying No on the Job

Keeping work environments drug-free takes a collaborative effort.

This year, the National Drug Council (NDC) again joins the US Department of Labour in celebrating its annual Drug-free Work Week.

The purpose of this week of awareness is to highlight the benefits of drug-free workplaces and to raise awareness of the many resources available to help people suffering from substance abuse.

The public awareness campaign, which runs from 18-24 October, also aims to educate employers, employees and the general public on how to achieve safe, healthy and drug-free work environments.

"There is no doubt that alcohol and drug abuse is detrimental to productivity. People might view their addictions as private matters but the fact is, substance abuse can weigh on fellow workers or even worse, place them at risk," stated NDC Executive Director Joan West-Dacres.

"As part of our National Anti-drug Strategy, we have identified the vital importance of encouraging companies to develop drug policies that outline treatment options and supporting staff on their road to recovery."

Adding his voice to the international campaign, Health Minister the Hon. Mark Scotland, JP stated: "A drug-free workplace benefits everyone. However, as with most societal challenges, ensuring safe, supportive and drug-free work environments takes a collaborative effort.

"I therefore urge all sectors of society - workers, managers, employers, friends and families - to commit to this ideal," he said.

Employers and employees in all industries can learn more about participating in Drug-free Work Week by contacting the NDC.

Ms. West-Dacres invited everyone to take part in this year's awareness activities: "We encourage employees and employers to contact us if should they need assistance with developing a company drug policy. We also have other Drug-free Work Week resources available," she said.

For more information contact the NDC at 949-9000, e-mail them at or visit

What Employers Can Do to Help

  • Draft and distribute your own drug-free workplace policy: Include workers in drafting the policy by using an open forum or by privately asking their opinions. Distribute the policy along with positive messages about valuing health and safety.
  • Remind employees about available services: Drug-free Work Week presents a perfect opportunity to remind staff about the availability of free confidential support programmes and counselling services, such as Alcoholics Anonymous, the Employee Assistance Programme and the Department of Counselling Services.
  • Distribute a payroll message listing support agencies: Pay-checks are one thing that every employee gives attention! For Drug-free Work Week, raise awareness by including a leaflet or message listing sources of help for those with substance abuse problems.


For further information contact: Cornelia Oliver