If you are struggling with addiction, it’s important that you reach out for help from a professional rehab centre. If you do go ahead with this, you may be worried about how rehab will affect your job. It’s important that you remember that recovering from your addiction and getting healthy and well again should always be your main priority. However, if you do have any doubts about attending rehab due to your job, this article should help to put your mind at ease.
Here, we will go over whether or not you can lose your job if you go to rehab. We will also look at the benefits of going back to work after your rehab treatment, the ways in which rehab can help to improve your future work performance, and how to speak to your employer about the prospect of seeking rehab treatment for your addiction.
Will I Lose My Job If I Go To Rehab?
Your employer does not have any right to fire you for attending rehab. However, the law is not very clear and may leave room for interpretation. This means that it will depend on your circumstances. This is why it’s a good idea to have a chat with your employer about you seeking rehab treatment. We will go over how to do this in the best way later in the article.
Employers are not legally required to implement any drug or alcohol policies or pay for the treatment for employees who are struggling with drug or alcohol addictions. However, the employment protection law means that employers have to treat addictions as a type of sickness rather than a cause for dismissal. This then gives the addict the chance to overcome their addiction.
Many companies and addicts may leave the problem until it’s too late and, in these cases, the addict may be dismissed due to their poor performance. However, when an addict is helped at an early stage, they can then recover from their addiction without losing their job.
The Benefits of Going Back to Work After Rehab
There is a lot of evidence that proves that returning to work after your recovery can help with your continued sobriety. One of the reasons for this is that returning to work will provide you with some stability and support. This routine can be fitted in with other activities that are demanded by your recovery.
If you don’t return to work after your recovery, this will leave you with a lot of spare time on your hands and there is a very good chance that boredom can act as a trigger, causing you to relapse. People who return to work after rehab are more likely to attain positive treatment outcomes and less likely to relapse than those who do not go to work after rehab.
Many rehab facilities offer some job seeking skill sessions within the treatment programme. Some rehab clinics will even help you get a job after your treatment. You can also be assisted with finding housing or moving to a new home if needed.
Many rehabs can also refer you to an occupational health expert. This is a person who will be able to help you with any problems that you may be experiencing with finding and maintaining a suitable job.
Some employers encourage applicants to apply who have struggled with substance abuse in the past. These employers will understand what you have had to go through and will have no judgements about your past at all.
How Can Rehab Improve Work Performance?
When you return to work after you’ve gone through your rehab treatment programme, you will likely find that you have much better concentration, critical thinking, and focus than you did before. Your working mindset will quickly return.
You will find that your brain function improves as your thoughts and feelings will no longer be impaired by the substances that once controlled your every being.
You will also find that your confidence returns. You will feel a huge amount of strength and empowerment after taking on your addiction and actually beating it. This aspect will reflect in every part of your life, including in your work life.
How To Speak To Your Employer About Going To Rehab
If you are planning on going to rehab and want to speak to your employer beforehand, here are some tips on how to ensure the conversation goes smoothly:
If you know that rehab is the right step for you and if you know that you’ll improve afterwards, these are some key things that you will want to communicate with your employer. Write down the things that you have been feeling recently. Include the ways in which you have noticed changes in your work and write down an explanation of what your doctor has diagnosed when you asked them for advice on your addiction.
Keep It Positive
It’s important to explain to your employer that you are going to be much better when you’ve completed your rehab treatment programme. Explain to your employer that having someone who is able to conquer these challenges of overcoming addiction is a big plus for them.
Don’t Be Afraid of Discrimination
In some cases, your boss may appear quite strict about the situation. However, they may understand that addiction is beyond their knowledge and something that you can’t control. If you are concerned about receiving a negative response from your boss, consider getting your union rep to go along with you. Alternatively, you could choose a trusted colleague to go into the meeting with you for support.
Always remember that if you disclose anything medical to your employer, this will remain confidential. If you have a good relationship with your boss, you may be able to have a much more open conversation about your addiction. However, it’s important to remember that you are discussing a medical condition and that you do have every right to just stick to the facts.