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.