America’s Opioid Crisis: What Employers and Their Counsel Need to Know
"Jackie Ford, a partner in the Vorys Houston office and a member of the labor and employment group, authored an article for Corporate Counsel titled "America’s Opioid Crisis: What Employers and Their Counsel Need to Know." The article focused on the specific challenges in the workplace that opioids are producing and things employers need to consider including drug testing issues; whether employers must “reasonably accommodate” opioid addictions; supervisor training; and leaves of absence for treatment – for workers and their families.
The article states:
"In addition to causing widespread misery in society as a whole, opioids are producing specific problems in the workplace. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports a 25% increase from 2012 to 2017 in the number of workers fatally overdosing on the job. Another study found that nearly half of prime working age men who are not in the labor force are taking daily doses of prescription pain medications (most of which are, in turn, opioids), a fact that must inevitably have a serious impact on the composition and work readiness of the available labor pool for new jobs. In this respect and myriad others, employers inevitably are being forced to make difficult decisions about handling addicted workers (and, in some cases, their family members), potential accommodations for affected workers, and the role of the workplace in treatment programs."
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