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The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist in the development of better social, employment and work-related policies. Disclaimer: This information is made available as a service to the public but has not been edited by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions. The content is the responsibility of the authors. There is no statistical data showing the development of drug abuse at the workplace in Germany.

The debate on alcohol or drug abuse by employees is less vital than ten years ago. In the s, guidelines on voluntary quality standards of prevention were set. In practice, there is indication of a grey area of pre-employment testing.

Guidelines on voluntary quality standards of prevention were set in the s. Respective programmes are provided by health insurers. Methodology Drogen- und Suchtbericht - Drogenbeauftragte. Various other surveys are conducted at federal state level see German report to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addictions.

However, none of these investigates drug abuse at the workplace. There are no national statistical sources on this subject. The report gives no references. Honsa gives a press release of the Federal Health Ministry for reference. The Health Ministry does not verify this source. It is also to be noted that academic research does not focus on alcohol and drug addiction alone, but also addresses new addictions such as work addiction, internet addiction or medical drug addiction at the workplace.

In addressing alcohol use, a qualitative research project , such as the one carried out at Hannover University is a rare exception. The project findings revealed that highly skilled female professionals and managers are at risk of alcohol abuse as a compensation for work-related stress. By definition, this study shall exclude the abuse of medical drugs. Yet, prescriptive drug use became an issue of expert debate when in first survey findings were published by the health insurer DAK DAK Gesundheitsreport A representative sample of 3, employees aged 20 to 50 years had been surveyed.

As mentioned above, these figures cannot be verified. Please note that any data given in the literature does not rest on post-mids studies or surveys. Data based on company surveys all stem from the late s and early s.

These surveys do not cover drug use at the workplace, however. Findings indicate that young persons in initial vocational training and in employment consume cannabis less often than high school students Report on cannabis use and consume alcohol less often than university students and young unemployed persons Report on alcohol use Focus on construction, transport:.

Use of drugs related to certain working conditions e. Again, almost all information is from the s and early s. In , W. The study takes special account of job insecurity as stress factor.

Based on surveys in public administration and metal working companies, Puls argues that the effort-reward imbalance at work impacts on alcohol use and should be considered in prevention. Yet, he also points at the influence of personality traits. A company case study by Puls a. Plans for establishing a research unit on working conditions and drug use at University Muenster failed because of funding.

A PhD thesis by M. Ennenbach investigates drug addictions of hospital staff. The survey findings indicate gender and age differences in the risk of drug abuse - young female staff is most at risk.

Company-based health risk analyses and reports by company physicians and labour inspectors rest on standardized questionnaires which do not deal with the rationale of drug use. Misconduct by professional drivers had caused an accident in 25, cases; of these cases 1. The annual reports by health insurer BKK Betriebskrankenkasse , BKK give yearly data on sick leave caused by mental and behavioural disorders due to psychoactive substances. This data, which is not representative of the working population, indicates a significant difference in substance dependence according to gender.

Yearly data includes unemployed persons. Please describe:. The transport sector is the only exception to the rule see below. The employer may not delegate a task if the worker does not seem to be in a position to carry it out.

Is there any sectoral legislation or agreement with the same purpose? Please focus on the construction and transport sectors. The transport sector is the exception to this rule.

Statutory road, maritime and flight traffic regulations. Under 1. Under 2. In both cases, the employee may reject testing which, in practice, involves the risk of job loss.

Under 3, the employees may demand a test. As ArbMedVV does not explicitly cover workplace-related health risks because of individual preconditions psychic, physic fatigue , drug consumption, etc. According to BGV A4, G25, testing must be conducted by a company medical officer after job entry before a novice employee performs the work task for the first time; testing is to be repeated every three to five years workers up to 40 years , every two to three years workers of 40 to 60 years and within two years time workers older than 60 years.

Measures are not specified; testing typically involves eye, urine and blood tests. In case of professional drivers trucks, busses, taxis aged 50 years or older, the driving licence regulation Fahrerlaubnisverordnung, FeV stipulates that an additional medical screening must be carried out every five years.

According to the Youth Worker Protection Act Jugendarbeitsschutzgesetz, JArbSchG young applicants for an initial vocational training position up to 18 years have to provide medical testing results to the employer showing that they physically comply to workplace demands; a follow-up testing is required after about a year. Depending on the employer these tests may or may not involve drug tests.

Trainees can reject drug testing at the risk of losing employment. According to ArbMedVV, the employer has to store testing results up to the end of the employment of the worker and to delete data afterwards. A copy of the deleted file has to be handed to the worker.

The Berufsgenossenschaften and labour inspectorates may demand access to the information. Consequences of positive drug tests vary depending on sector and working task. For instance: In spring , the regional labour court of Cologne approved the direct dismissal of a truck driver of dangerous goods who had been detected driving with 0. In contrast, a works agreement covering university staff arranges for health rehabilitation measures.

To our knowledge, the regulation of testing methods is not an issue. Please note that pre-employment drug testing is not covered by law or accident regulations. Yet under the dictum of occupational safety and health risk prevention, pre-employment testing is not strictly forbidden either. Due to media coverage a grey area of blood and urine testing of job applicants by large companies became known in In practice, there are indications that testing methods have changed as leading companies in the field of safety technology have promoted alcohol and drug screening devices Alco Interlock in vehicles and as entrance barriers to workplaces.

The Ministry is in favour of voluntary implementation. Are the prevention programmes based on joint assessment of the social partners and defined in an agreed policy for the enterprises? To clarify the issue there is a need to first differentiate between the levels and actors involved:.

A national programme specifically targeting employees and the workplace level is not in place. DHS commissioned an expert report on the practice of company-based drug prevention which in was debated by policy actors, health insurers and social partners as a way to define voluntary quality standards for preventions of addictions at company level.

Employers are asked to follow a step-by-step way of procedure of intervention: In case problems fulfilling a working task are suspected to be caused by an addiction, the employee should first be addressed in a supportive manner; if problems reoccur an interview should clarify which form of intervention is needed.

The following steps have to involve various actors works council, HR department, occupational doctor, BG for implementing either rehabilitation and reintegration measures or dismissal. Under law; companies are consulted by the sectoral Berufsgenossenschaften BG , which also train staff members in charge of health and safety issues and which decide on rehabilitation measures. In regard to drug use prevention and rehabilitation, all BG provide seminars, tool kits and guidelines for managerial staff as well as information brochures for employees.

Apart from the BG, the statutory health insurers have to offer company-based prevention measures, yet by decision they exclusively focus on alcohol abuse and smoking. Works agreements typically exist in public administrations, universities and public hospitals; they are widespread in large companies.

According to the DHS expert report, throughout the s, policies changed from a strong focus on case management health rehabilitation of drug addicts to an integration into company-based occupational health and safety, prevention and health management programmes.

Arrangements and procedures vary in detail, yet they have become more standardized since the DHS quality standards have been in place. There is no evaluation of these measures. The most extensive drug and alcohol prevention programme is implemented in the maritime industries, following the resolution of the Joint Maritime Commission of the ILO.

Considering the fact of widespread information, seminars and company-based interventions by health experts, a regressive development can be assumed — at least in large companies covered by works agreements and active in prevention management. Yet, speculations on high consumption rates have triggered a practice of pre-employment testing and a growing interest in new technological testing devices marketed by international safety technology manufacturers. Privacy data protection lags behind.

Eurofound, Wyattville Road, Loughlinstown, Co. Brussels, Belgium eurofound. Eurofound is an agency of the European Union. Skip to main content. Published on: 07 May Back to working life country profiles. If so, identify them and explain their characteristics and methodology.

Are there any other sources of information published after mids that may provide valuable information on the issue i.


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