On-Site Magazine

Supporting the Trades During the Opioid Crisis

By Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction   

Health & Safety

New resources to support employers and employees on workplace safety and substance use

People working in trades and construction are being disproportionately affected by the opioid overdose crisis. Repetitive stress injuries and chronic pain can lead workers to experience the harms of substance use.

To support employers in these sectors, the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction has partnered with Health Canada to produce an online toolkit of resources to help people in these professions. Substance Use and the Workplace: Supporting Employers and Employees in the Trades is a collection of tools to give you the information you need to help workers and support workplace health and safety.


Employers can find ready-to-use resources from more than 30 organizations to reduce risks related to substances and substance use disorders, and to support workplace health and safety. The toolkit also provides guidance to assist employees experiencing the harms of substance use.

The toolkit includes resources to:

  • Educate employees about substances and their effects;
  • Prevent substance use risks and harms;
  • Address employee harmful substance use through policy and practices;
  • Provide information on the harmful effects of stigma and substance use;
  • Find services and supports; and
  • Access information about organizations that can help.

In addition to the construction, trades and transportation industries being heavily affected by the opioid overdose crisis, there are significantly higher rates of opioid-related deaths among men than women. As well, men are less likely to reach out for help for health issues. The stigma of substance use can make seeking help even more difficult. Having accessible resources such as those provided in this toolkit available to employers and employees is a key step in reducing the harms of substance use.

Download the toolkit today.


Stories continue below