May / June / July 2015

TAP offers free seminar to business agents and employers

TAP is holding its annual Business Agent and Employer Seminar on Friday, June 26, at the TAP office in Oakland from 9 a.m. to Noon. Lunch will be served.

This year’s seminar is entitled, “Keeping the job while kicking the habit—When treatment works, so do your members.

Drug abuse and addiction have negative consequences for individuals, employers, coworkers and families. Estimates of the total overall costs of substance abuse in the United States, including productivity, health, and crime-related costs, exceed $600 billion annually. This includes approximately $193 billion for illicit drugs, $193 billion for tobacco, and $235 billion for alcohol. As staggering as these numbers are, they do not fully describe the breadth of destructive public health and safety implications of drug abuse and addiction, such as family disintegration, loss of employment, failure in school, domestic violence, and child abuse.

Fortunately, treatments are available to help people counter addiction’s powerful disruptive effects. TAP offers assessment, referral to quality programs, monitoring treatment, return to work assistance, and continuing care. Part of TAP’s mission is to reduce the negative consequences suffered by everyone involved with a substance-abusing individual.

Many people do not understand why or how other people become addicted to drugs. It is often mistakenly assumed that drug abusers lack moral principles or willpower and that they could stop using drugs simply by choosing to change their behavior. In reality, alcohol and drug addiction is a complex disease, and quitting takes more than good intentions or a strong will. In fact, because drugs change the brain in ways that foster compulsive drug abuse, quitting is difficult, even for those who are ready to do so. Through scientific advances, we know more about how drugs work in the brain than ever, and we also know that drug addiction can be successfully treated to help people stop abusing drugs and lead productive lives. A better understanding of the addiction/recovery process makes it much easier to direct someone to get help sooner, thereby reducing negative consequences.

The objective of this seminar is to inform business agents and employers about substance abuse and the treatment/recovery process. TAP believes, based on years of employee assistance research, that business agents and supervisors who understand substance abuse and the referral process are more likely to direct substance abusing members/employees to obtain help before members/employees lose their job.

Business agents will receive a brochure and invitation to the seminar. Please invite any employers/ supervisors who you think will benefit from such a seminar.

If you would like to attend, please call Veronica at 510-562-3600.