Happy Labor Day!

The video’s got nothing to do with recovery, but it’s a great song and is apropos for Labor Day.

While we’re on the subject of labor, Bill White had a post a while back on the subject:

In 2011, Dieter Henkel of the Institute for Addiction Research at the University of Applied Sciences in Frankfurt, Germany, conducted a comprehensive review of international studies on the relationship between substance use and employment that was published inCurrent Drug Abuse Reviews (4, 4-27).  Henkel drew the following conclusions from his review of more than 130 scientific studies:

  1. Unemployment, particularly prolonged unemployment, heightens the probability of risky alcohol and other drug (AOD) use and the development of AOD dependencies, with these risks being significantly magnified for young adults.
  2. AOD problems heighten the risks of losing unemployment and decreasing one’s odds of re-gaining employment.
  3. Those in recovery from AOD problems are at increased risk of losing their jobs and being denied employment due to stigma-related discrimination.
  4. Unemployment following recovery initiation increases the risk of resuming AOD use and experiencing more severe consequences resulting from resumed use.
  5. Unemployed men and women are more likely to smoke and to smoke greater quantities–a concern given the greater risks of AOD resumption and mortality for smokers in recovery from other addictions.

Put more affirmatively, stable work lowers the risk of developing AOD problems and is a major factor in enhancing recovery stability and quality of life in long-term recovery.

Then Bill threw down the gauntlet:

So here’s the question:  if employment is such a critical factor in recovery initiation and recovery stability, and if addiction treatment programs really are committed to science-informed addiction treatment; then why do we not see vocational education and training programs integrated as a service option within all addiction treatment programs?  Why are purchasers of care not demanding integration of these “ancillary” supports to slow the revolving door of acute addiction treatment and to improve long-term recovery outcomes?

We’re working on it.