Businesses are Very Concerned About Drug Usage


January 28, 2009

Angelo M. Valente
Executive Director
Phone: 201.919.1136


Seventy Percent of New Jersey Businesses are Very Concerned About the Issue of Drug and Alcohol Use and Abuse in the Workplace

NEWARK, NJ—With thousands of New Jersey business leaders planning the annual New Jersey State Chamber of Commerce’s Walk to Washington, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ) today released the results of a statewide study measuring the degree of concern and impact of alcohol and substance abuse in the workplace. The study, which surveyed 300 New Jersey employers in October 2008, was conducted through Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind Poll, and has a margin of error of +/-5.0 percent. The survey results will be distributed to all New Jersey Business Leaders who are attending the ‘Walk to Washington” on Thursday, January 29, 2009.

New Jersey employers were concerned about a variety of safety sensitive issues regarding their employees with 87 percent indicating that they were “very/somewhat” concerned about the issues of drugs and alcohol in the workforce. Over half of the companies surveyed indicated that the abuse of prescription drugs and alcohol, by employees, at most New Jersey companies, is a “very/somewhat” serious concern. Fifty eight percent of these same employers responded that the use of illegal drugs such as marijuana, cocaine or heroin, by employees in most New Jersey companies, is also a serious problem.

In response to these concerns, 75 percent of the New Jersey employers surveyed have a written drug-free workplace policy. Nearly all large employers (100-250 employees), about 80 percent of medium sized employers (30-99 employees) and about 60 percent of small employers (10-29 employees), have an established drug-free workplace policy. Forty two percent of employers surveyed, including 61 percent of large employers in New Jersey, perform some kind of pre-employment drug testing.

Over 60 percent of New Jersey companies who have established drug-free workplace policies have found them to be “very effective” in reducing accidents, absenteeism and the number of workplace compensation claims filed. The policy also helped increase productivity and employee morale. “In these tough economic times, maintaining a drug-free workplace policy is a clear benefit to both the employee and employer, while assisting a company’s bottom line,” explained Angelo M. Valente, executive director, PDFNJ.

New Jersey companies use various sources to gain information regarding drug-free workplace programs. Information provided by PDFNJ, especially the Drugs Don’t Work in NJ! program, was the second highest rated source of information for small companies and among the top tier of information sources for all companies, with 60 percent of employers saying that they would utilize the organization’s services.

The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey, through its Drugs Don’t Work in NJ! program, offers free assistance in drug-free workplace policy development and implementation. There are currently over 2,500 New Jersey businesses who have utilized the drug-free workplace services.

Full study results are available at

Best known for its statewide anti-drug advertising campaign, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is a private not-for-profit coalition of professionals from the communications, corporate and government communities whose collective mission is to reduce demand for illicit drugs in New Jersey through media communication. To date, more than $50 million in broadcast time and print space has been donated to the Partnership's New Jersey campaign, making it the largest Public Service advertising campaign in New Jersey's history. Since its inception the Partnership has garnered over 46 Advertising and Public Relations Awards from National, Regional & Statewide Media Organizations