Acas uses cookies to ensure we give you the best experience and to make the site simpler. Find out more about cookies.

Website URL : http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=4387

Dealing with someone who has a drug or alcohol problem

When you become aware of the issue, you should:

  • keep accurate, confidential records of instances of poor performance or other problems
  • interview the worker in private as early as possible in the process
  • concentrate on the instances of poor performance that have been identified
  • ask for the worker's reasons for poor performance and question whether it could be due to a health problem, without specifically mentioning alcohol or drugs
  • if appropriate, discuss your alcohol and drugs policy and the help available inside or outside of your organisation
  • agree future action
  • arrange regular meetings to monitor progress and discuss any further problems if they arise.

Under the Misuse of Drugs Act drugs are classified according to their perceived danger.

  • Class A: including ecstasy, cocaine, heroin, LSD, mescaline, methadone, morphine, opium and injectable forms of class B drugs.
  • Class B: including cannabis, cannabis resin, oral preparations of amphetamines, barbiturates, codeine and methaqualone (Mandrax).
  • Class C: including most benzodiazepine (for example, Temazepam, Valium), other less harmful drugs of the amphetamine group, and anabolic steroids.