I joined this community just for the purpose of replying to this...
1) Have you had any experience with other employees taking drugs in their spare time, at work, or arriving at work under the influence of substances? Yes/No
Yes, yes, yes, and YES... OMG YES!
2) If yes, did you notice any changes to their performance? were they more incident prone, miss work completely or late to work etc
First off, I work in the Bar Industry so its safe to assume that many of the people I work with have "issues" with substance abuse. With that being said; I haven't always worked for bars/pubs but yet have seen addiction in every part of the food industry (its just they seem more open about it when your surrounded by alcohol). Changes in these people were minor to blatantly obvious. From the squinty-eyed dishwasher to the full out physical shove match online with an over necrotic paranoid cook that couldn't tell what was up or down. Iv even worked next to a few "functional" alcoholics and cocaine users that couldn't put their pants on without a snort. The most recent in an 18 year old that I work with whom over the passed year has attempted to drink himself into oblivion. It started off slow, but then I started to realize that the person I was working next to just wasn't the same. He was slower, couldn't focus on more then one thing at a time and got frustrated easily. His only saving grace was that he was reliable.
3) How did you, or the manager, react to this employee and what action was taken?
Management in all cases did squat or less then. Most of them having issues themselves. At most ,they would tell them to tone it down or not to do it at work.... pfft
With the kid, I tried to explain to him that its not the way to go, and that hes only making it harder on everyone else that depends on him to be at the top of his game. I gave him time to adjust but did nothing for the situation. I took a shift away from him explaining that he was next to useless on this day and I'm tired of it (being a Saturday, the end of his work week). Friday came around and OMFG was he useless. I explained to him that coming in hungover is the same as coming in drunk and that if he couldn't manage to sober up by 4pm then he was no good to me. I talked to the kitchen manager and the owner explaining my frustration... they did nothing.
So, where does that leave me? Well, it turned out that he was looking for another part time job because he f-ed up his car.... he was driving drunk and he needed to get it fixed. I new one of the places he applied too and was turned down so I called them to find out why. The owner told me strait out that several of his employees know him and referred to him as being a drunken idiot and untrustworthy. I told him what was going on with and urged him to hire the kid. I then went up to the kid and explained the situation and why he didn't get this particular job, he looked upset to say the least; I also told him that he has a second interview with them . He got the job AND for the most part been sober for a month now. He did tell me that we went out the other day after work with his friends but only had one beer.
4) Do you think their is a drug/alcohol problem in this industry? Please provide a brief explanation of your choice.
Yeah, there is a problem, but i see this problem everywhere. It just seems to me that its more accepted in the restaurant/bar industry.