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Team Awareness for Workplace Substance Abuse Prevention: The Empirical and Conceptual Development of a Training Program

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Abstract

This paper describes the empirical and theoretical development of a workplace training program to help reduce/prevent employee alcohol and drug abuse and enhance aspects of the work group environment that support ongoing prevention. The paper (1) examines the changing social context of the workplace (e.g., teamwork, privacy issues) as relevant for prevention, (2) reviews studies that assess risks and protective factors in employee substance abuse (work environment, group processes, and employee attitudes), (3) provides a conceptual model that focuses on work group processes (enabling, neutralization of deviance) as the locus of prevention efforts, (4) describes an enhanced team-oriented training that was derived from previous research and the conceptual model, and (5) describes potential applications of the program. It is suggested that the research and conceptual model may help prevention scientists to assess the organizational context of any workplace prevention strategy. The need for this team-oriented approach may be greater among employees who experience psychosocial risks such as workplace drinking climates, social alienation, and policies that emphasize deterrence (drug testing) over educative prevention. Limitations of the model are also discussed.

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Bennett, J.B., Lehman, W.E.K. & Reynolds, G.S. Team Awareness for Workplace Substance Abuse Prevention: The Empirical and Conceptual Development of a Training Program. Prev Sci 1, 157–172 (2000). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1010025306547

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