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I The risk of


consuming drugs or addictive substances for people ages 15–64 year (of working age) is increasing in Columbia.


n Latin America, 38 million people are affected by alcohol abuse. Tis statistic, reported by the Pan American Health


Organization of Health Care (OPS), is alarming because by the year 2002, 25 percent of deaths in this part of the world were caused by, or related to, alcohol. Tese deaths could have been prevented. In order to beter understand this


epidemic, it is important to mention that the risk of consuming drugs or addictive substances for people ages 15–64 year (of working age) is increasing in Columbia. It has been proven that 70 percent of drug users are employed.2


It is also a fact that


employees with addictions to alcohol and drugs have five times more accidents at work and get sick seven times more oſten than other employees. Tey cause 36 per- cent of manufacturing accidents and their work productivity is reduced by 50 percent.


Over 25 percent of accidents on the job are caused by illegal drug use.2 There are no formal studies or statis-


tics in Colombia about the consequences of consuming drugs or alcohol in a work- ing environment. Some working environ- ments are particularly dangerous when it comes to worker drug and alcohol use, such as construction sites, transporta- tion, health care facilities, electrical, and financial areas. The Colombian government has his-


torically established laws aimed at reduc- ing the number of people who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol while at work. In its 49th article, Colombia’s Substantive Labor Code (established in 1950) states “every person must take care of not only his or her health but also of those in the community” and in its 60th article prohibits a person to show up at work drunk or under the effect of any other narcotic or drug. Te National Drug Council was created


by decree 1206 in 1973 to help the na- tional government with recommendations on policies, plans, programs and projects public and private entities could use to fight against drug abuse in its different manifestations such as production, traf- ficking and consumption. By this time, the Columbian govern-


ment started to understand the need to have not only coercive laws with conse- quences to those who consume, but also that include prevention and the promo- tion of policies and strategies that would abate the problem. Resolution 1016 of 1989 set in motion health care projects that would improve the quality of life of the employees of any business. With Reso- lution 1075 of 1992 came preventative activities and pharmaceutical controls. In 1994, because of the need to reduce


drug or alcohol misuse in the popula- tion of Colombia, decree 1108 was born. Tis decree regulates certain cases that involve carrying or consuming narcot-


22 datia focus summer 2013


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