Drug & alcohol abuse surging during COVID


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New data from across Canada confirms that drug and alcohol abuse is spiking during the pandemic.

“We tell people coping with addiction not to isolate”, says Jennifer Austin, who coaches people with substance abuse disorder. “Then the pandemic comes along and we’re literally telling everyone to isolate, like, lock yourself indoors.”

“The longer people had to isolate it was relapse, relapse, overdose, relapse, overdose,” said another care provider who hosts Alcoholics Anonymous classes. “It’s been awful to watch.”

B.C.’s Construction Industry Rehabilitation Plan (CIRP), a non-profit alcohol and drug treatment program, has had a 47% increase in calls this year. “(Our program) is seeing a huge increase in calls, the highest number of clients we’ve ever had in the program.”

It’s incumbent upon managers to identify employees who may be unfit for duty. But employee drug and alcohol testing can’t be performed on a mere hunch. Shift OHS Inc. provides Reasonable Cause Supervisor Training to impart substance awareness, the necessary tools, and practical skills to recognize and appropriately handle employees exhibiting signs of impairment.

Call 1-877-572-1324 to speak with our 541 Eagleson Wynd, Edmonton T6M 0Y4 team for free

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About Me

Ben Barfett, Principal and Consultant, has spent his life in the construction sector, specifically heavy civil, enviro, commercial, and energy. Having held senior roles in business development, technical advisory, and regional management, he earned his stripes in the field and in head office. Conscious of the interplay between commercial, legal, and execution aspects of construction, his business insights are informed by expertise in WCB policy and enhanced with disability-specific training.

Blue Collar Consulting

Blue Collar Consulting is a WCB and disability management firm. The company specializes in rapid and affordable disability solutions that advance current claims, contain the cost of future claims, and get injured workers back on their feet.