Information taken from BITC – Alcohol, Drugs and Tobacco toolkit
Going further: taking the next step
If you feel your company can and want to go further, become an ambassador for supporting employees to make healthier choices around alcohol, drugs and tobacco.
Sharing your stories can help other organisations provide support for their employees, and by being part of a supportive network of individuals in a work environment where you spend a large amount of time, you can learn what others are doing, to support the continued development of your own approach.
Keeping the programme active and current
Successful programmes are ongoing and evolving. Sustain your programme by integrating it into the workplace culture and environment and keeping the programme responsive to changing conditions and people’s views.
Workplace alcohol, drug and tobacco policies and programmes are often reviewed and updated. Keep abreast of best practices and programmes by joining local advocacy groups, which can be sourced through your local council. Small-business associations and trade and professional organisations might also provide up-to-date information about drug-free workplace issues.
Maintain positive and regular communication
Periodically repeating messages in a positive, non-invasive way, is important to ensuring that communication is successful.
Effective ways to communicate include intranet and occasional emails, written materials, charts, meetings, question-and answer sessions, and suggestion boxes. If you want to maximise your impact, become involved in national campaigns and events such as No Smoking Day and Stoptober.
Involve your employees
Ask a group of employees to periodically review the programme and suggest appropriate changes. Some employers and unions survey their employees or members and their families regarding their interest in substance misuse and health and wellness programmes. Many employee assistance programmes also offer or arrange for both general and specialised employee education activities.
Here are some other actions that employers can take to help sustain the workplace effort:
- Sponsor or help with prevention services in your community that would benefit your employees and their families
- Include healthy lifestyle articles in your organisation’s newsletter to be a resource for those that wish to adopt healthier lifestyles
- Appoint a corporate representative to serve on and support any local dependency support community partnerships in your area
- Provide alcohol-free options at events for employees
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