Are you someone that employs people and you want to know what to do if an employee is or becomes an alcoholic? You may not be able to tell that they are until they have worked for you for a while. Here are some ideas on how to handle this from a reputable tabc lawyer.
You need to figure out if the employee is showing up to work drunk. Some people are really good at playing off the fact that they are, and all the while they may be drinking on the job right in front of you. Try to have a face to face talk with them because it’s difficult to mask the scent of alcohol. Look for glassy eyes, trouble staying awake, and behavior that is not normal. If they are especially clumsy, this is another sign.
Anyone that is drunk on the job, you may just want to fire them to get them out of your hair. However, if you have a way to get them some help and can give their job back if they do, you just may save that person’s life. Firing someone does not fix the alcohol issue, and if you care about the person, you may be able to change their life. You can let them know that if they get the help, you’ll work with them again, but if they ever start to drink after that, you’re letting them go for good.
The biggest mistake you can make is just to let people come to work in whatever condition as long as you think the work they do is okay. The problem with this is that if someone were to get hurt because of the person drinking alcohol, and it’s obvious that you knew they showed up drunk often, you could get sued. You have to be able to tell people not to work and if you find out people have been drinking you can’t just let them continue to work because you don’t want to be short staffed out of concern for the safety of everyone.
If you have an employee that is obviously an alcoholic, you need to take action. Getting them help and making sure that they aren’t working in any situation where anyone could get hurt is a very good idea. Use what you learned here, and if anyone shows up to work obviously intoxicated you need to send them home on the spot for safety reasons.