EMCDDA webinar: Workplaces and drugs – issues and challenges for the future

EMCDDA webinar: workplaces and drugs, issues and challenges for the future, 28 April 2022 12.00-13-30 CET

Objective: In the context of the EMCDDA Health and Social Responses miniguide on 'Workplaces and drugs', this webinar brings together experts in the field to provide an overview of the topic, share their experiences and discuss future challenges. The speakers will present case studies describing substance use in the workplace and prevention measures adopted.

Background: A significant proportion of workers in Europe are likely to have problems associated with alcohol or drug use. For example, it is estimated that between 5% and 20% of the working population in Europe have serious problems related to their use of alcohol. In addition to the general public health and social implications, substance use problems are highly relevant in industries which involve safety issues, or where individual performance failings can have a significant impact. There is no comprehensive overview of the extent and nature of different types of interventions in workplaces in Europe. Moreover, the evidence regarding effectiveness of different interventions is scarce. Most European countries have some kind of general legislation or agreements to prohibit or regulate the consumption of alcohol and drugs in the workplace. However, the type of legislation in force, and the nature of occupational safety and health legislation, vary considerably depending on the national culture and the awareness of, and priority given to, the issue. Workplace is an important setting for prevention activities, playing a role similar to schools for children.


  1. William Cockburn and Annick Starren, Interim Executive Director and Project Manager at the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), Spain.
  2. Johanne Korsdal Sørensen, Researcher, School of Culture and Society, Department of Anthropology, Aarhus University, Denmark.
  3. Elisabete Santos, clinical psychologist, specialisation in aviation psychology and occupational health psychology, Portugal.

Chairpersons: Inês Hasselberg, EMCDDA and Alessandra Bo, EMCDDA.

Opening and closing remarks: to be confirmed

Format: EMCDDA opening remarks, panellists' questions, guided discussion, Q&A.

Participants will answer to the following questions:

  1. What are the most pressing challenges right now in Europe? What are the implications for policy and practice?
  2. What do we know about substance use in the workplace? A case study from Denmark.
  3. What is being done to address the problem? A case study from Portugal


Length: 1.5 hours

Participants: The webinar is open to EMCDDA staff members, the Reitox network and external individuals. Participation is possible upon registration, after which the person will receive a link to connect.

Date: 28 April 2022 | 12.00-13.30 Lisbon time (13.00–14.30 CET).

Platform: Zoom

A recording of this webinar is available in our Media library.