Contrary to popular belief, most Americans struggling with addiction are employed, continuing to hold down a job while living with a substance use disorder. According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD), over 70 percent of those individuals that have issues with illicit substances are employed, as are most binge drinkers. However, most employers are unaware of just how impacted their workforce is from addiction. Overall, the economic impact of substance use disorder in America is over $442 billion dollars, with much of that impacting employers and the workforce in the form of absenteeism, healthcare costs, and lost productivity.
Due to these reasons, Maryland Addiction Recovery Center, in partnership with Ashley Addiction Treatment and American Design and Build (ADB) have recently announced the launch of a new, innovative Recovery Ready Workplace pilot program. This new initiative, piloted for the employees of ADB, will look to equip small and mid-sized businesses with education and resources to identify and address substance use disorder and mental health concerns among employees and provide confidential assessments and accessible treatment program referrals.
Maryland Addiction Recovery Center Executive Director Sam Bierman, Ashley Addiction Treatment VP of Business Development Alex Denstman, and American Design and Build President Joe Tunney spearheaded this initiative, that will begin as a pilot program at ADB with the hope that it will be able to be utilized for other small and mid-sized businesses that all too often do not have the bandwidth internally to adequately address employees dealing with addiction and mental health issues.
“Addiction impacts every workplace, whether it’s clearly recognizable or not,” said Alex Dentsman, VP of Business Development at Ashley Addiction Treatment. “The first step business owners can take is to become educated then invest in prevention and treatment. Once we see this shift take place among business leaders, we will begin to see the benefits mobilize throughout the entire community. Our ultimate goal for this program is to lay the foundation for other treatment centers in cities across the U.S.”
As mentioned earlier, substance use disorder and mental illness within the workplace are widely known to lead to absenteeism, accidents, and injuries on the job, low company morale amongst employees, a decrease in productivity, and an increase in illness. A company incapable of appropriately supporting those suffering from addiction and co-occurring disorders will often then have to deal with issues within the company workforce and culture, lost revenue, and an overall unhealthy work environment. This new pilot program hopes to offer a solution to these issues. The program, which is being offered to at no cost to ADB, accelerates a much-needed solution among small and mid-sized businesses to help those affected by addiction and their families find a path to long-term healing and recovery.
“Substance use disorder is a chronic illness that requires participation and investment from all involved to find a successful resolution,” explained Maryland Addiction Recovery Center Co-Founder and Executive Director Sam Bierman. “As we continue to fight addiction, it is imperative that businesses recognize the importance of educating and supporting their employees about substance use disorder and mental health. We’re grateful for the progressive thinking of ADB’s leadership team and are honored to collaborate with Ashley to bring this program to life.”
American Design and Build (ADB) is the first organization to pilot the new Recovery Ready Workforce program. The program offers expertise, support, guidance, education, confidential assessments, and treatment referrals to companies that may be too small to have an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or the bandwidth in their Human Resources department to handle the complexity of employees dealing with addiction and mental illness. After changing its policies, ADB has seen steady improvements in performance, productivity, and retention among its employees across the board.
“At ABD, we operate not only as colleagues, but as on big happy family, so when we learned that two previously terminated employees had succumbed to their disease, we were devastated,” said Joe Tunney, President of American Design and Build. “I’m grateful to Ashley and MARC for this opportunity and encourage any organization- big or small- to reach out and establish their own recovery ready workplace program. I can assure it will result in more dedicated and fulfilled employees and maybe even save someone’s life in the process.”
The Recovery Ready Workforce program is the result of Ashley, MARC and ADB’s commitment to reduce the stigma associated with addiction and mental health disorders and help those who are struggling to find their own personal recovery solution. The project partners hope to establish a long-term program, which will serve and support many small to mid-sized businesses over time.
If you or someone you know needs help for addiction or co-occurring disorder issues, please give us a call. Maryland Addiction Recovery Center offers the most comprehensive dual diagnosis addiction treatment in the Mid-Atlantic area. If we aren’t the best fit for you or your loved one, we will take the necessary time to work with you to find a treatment center or provider that better fits your needs. Please give us a call at (410) 773-0500 or email our team at [email protected]. For more information on all of our drug addiction, alcohol addiction and co-occurring disorder services and recovery resources, please visit our web site at www.marylandaddictionrecovery.com.